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Derek Jarman struggled for seven years to bring his portrait of the 17th century Italian artist Michelangelo da Caravaggio to the screen. The result was well worth the wait.
It’s a freely dramatised portrait which conjures several of the controversial artist’s most famous paintings through elaborate and beautifully photographed tableaux vivants, and boasts wonderful performances from Nigel Terry, Sean Bean, and, in her first role, Tilda Swinton.
Love Is the Devil: Study for a Portrait of Francis Bacon
Biopic 1998 87 mins Director: John Maybury
Derek Jacobi and Daniel Craig star as artist Francis Bacon and his muse George Dyer in John Maybury’s darkly exquisite biopic.
Distant Voices, Still Lives
Biopic 1988 81 mins Director: Terence Davies
Terence Davies' debut feature is a remarkable evocation of working-class family life in the 40s and 50s and a visionary exploration of memory.
Nature of the Beast
Biopic 2017 96 mins Director: Daniel Draper
A suitably forthright profile of the evergreen socialist, trade unionist and Labour politician Dennis Skinner - also known as the Beast of Bolsover.
Letters from Baghdad
Documentary 2016 91 mins Director: Sabine Krayenbühl
Tilda Swinton narrates the extraordinary journey of Gertrude Bell, a singular woman who played a significant – often unrecognised – role in British imperial policy making in Iraq.
Nick's Film (Lightning Over Water)
Biopic 1980 90 mins Director: Nicholas Ray
Simultaneously a love letter and a farewell, this documentary charts the last few months of acclaimed director Nicholas Ray through the eyes of Wim Wenders.
Historical drama 2017 90 mins Director: Niles Atallah
Niles Atallah's wild, inspired history of French adventurer Orélie-Antoine de Tounens, told via puppetry, stop-motion and degraded film stock.
LGBTQ+ Best of 2018
Girls on Film 2: Before Dawn
Anthology 2017 111 mins Director: Lorelei Pepi
An electric collection of 11 award-winning, lesbian and feminist short films exploring fantasies, dreams, desires, love and transgression.
God's Own Country
Drama 2017 105 mins Director: Francis Lee
A troubled young sheep farmer falls for a hired hand in this stunning debut from Francis Lee.
The Book of Gabrielle
Drama 2016 79 mins Director: Lisa Gornick
Lisa Gornick's funny and frank drama sketches the relationship between a sex-obsessed lesbian illustrator and a randy hetero author, who bond over their favourite subject.
Drama 2017 88 mins Director: John Trengove
A traditional rite of passage ritual forms the backdrop for this tough and complex tale of closeted sexuality in South Africa.
Boys on Film 18: Heroes
Anthology 2018 132 mins Director: Dean Loxton
Ten uplifting and powerful tales of everyday heroes, each striving for their own identities whether gay, bi or transgender, and fighting for the right to be themselves.
50 Years Legal
Documentary 2017 77 mins Director: Simon Napier-Bell
Five decades on from the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality, a range of LGBTQ+ stars (including Sir Elton John and Stephen Fry) reflect on Britain's history of prejudice, persecution and liberation.
The Propaganda Game
Documentary 2015 94 mins Director: Álvaro Longoria
Spanish documentary filmmaker Álvaro Longoria is our guide around the most secretive state on earth – North Korea.
Tetsuo II: Body Hammer
Horror 1991 81 mins Director: Shinya Tsukamoto
Shinya Tsukamoto's sequel has the Iron Man transforming into a cyberkinetic gun when a gang of vicious skinheads kidnap his son.
Tetsuo: The Iron Man
Fantasy 1988 67 mins Director: Shinya Tsukamoto
Shinya Tsukamoto's wild cyberpunk tale of a businessman's agonising transformation into a walking scrap heap is a jaggedly dehumanised vision of the future.
Power in Our Hands
Documentary 2015 75 mins Director: Angela Spielsinger
Ground-breaking documentary that uses archive film to tell the story of the British Deaf community’s fight for civil rights.
Comedy 1998 116 mins Director: Vera Chytilová
Věra Chytilová's dark, post-communist comedy. After a veterinary surgeon is sexually assaulted by two men, she uses her particular expertise in castraton to exact her revenge…
Drama 1963 81 mins Director: Vera Chytilová
Věra Chytilová's first feature is an important work of women's cinema, which contrasts the parallel stories of a gymnast (filmed as documentary) and a housewife (told as fiction).