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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 Death of Mr. Lazarescu
Comedy 2005 154 mins Director: Cristi Puiu
Cristi Puiu's multiple award-winning drama about a seriously ill man caught in an absurdist bureaucratic nightmare over the course of one night.
Our New President
Documentary 2018 78 mins Director: Maxim Pozdorovkin
The Russian media's obsession with the election of Donald Trump is told entirely through clips, in this fascinating essay on news bias, pop culture and the power of images.
From Caligari to Hitler: German Cinema in the Age of the Masses
Documentary 2014 114 mins Director: Rüdiger Suchsland
Rüdger Suchsland’s 2014 documentary on the social and cultural impact of German cinema during the Weimar Republic.
Drama 1925 94 mins Silent Director: E.A. Dupont
This under-appreciated classic of German silent cinema stars Emil Jannings as Boss, a middle-aged circus acrobat whose life is derailed by a seductive stranger (Lya de Putti).
War 1930 96 mins Director: G.W. Pabst
Four infantrymen on the Western Front suffer the everyday hardships and insanity of trench warfare, in G.W. Pabst's anti-war classic.
Western 2006 104 mins Director: John Hillcoat
John Hillcoat and Nick Cave's brilliant, brutal bushranger western, with Guy Pearce as the outlaw tasked with tracking down his psychopathic elder brother (Danny Huston).