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The Day the Earth Caught Fire
The BFI’s new HD remaster of the British sci-fi classic. A journalist discovers that the Earth has been knocked off its axis and is moving ever closer to the sun. Is the Earth doomed?
Science Fiction 1961 100 mins
Director: Val Guest
When the USA and Russia simultaneously test atomic bombs, the earth is knocked off its axis and set on a collision course with the sun. Peter Stenning (Edward Judd), a washed-up Daily Express reporter, breaks the story and sets about investigating the government cover-up. This new HD remaster by the BFI National Archive is exclusively available on BFI Player ahead of its DVD/Blu-ray release.
With strong performances (Leo McKern is a stand-out), a vivid depiction of the world of newspaper journalism, and extensive location shooting on the streets of London, Val Guest delivers one of the best British sci-fi films.
It Happened Here
Science Fiction 1965 101 mins Director: Kevin Brownlow
Kevin Brownlow and Andrew Mollo's legendary, independently produced speculative fiction, imagining the Nazi occupation of Britain.
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.
The Tenth Victim
Fantasy 1965 89 mins Director: Elio Petri
Long before The Hunger Games, Marcello Mastroianni and Ursula Andress battled it out in a televised assassination game, in Elio Petri’s cult sci-fi.
Woman in the Moon
Science Fiction 1929 170 mins Silent Director: Fritz Lang
Fritz Lang’s second silent sci-fi classic after Metropolis is a space exploration saga about scheming scientists searching for gold on the moon.
Quatermass and the Pit
Horror 1967 94 mins Director: Roy Ward Baker
One of Britain’s finest sci-fi films, based on Nigel Kneale’s masterful script, about the discovery of ancient alien craft beneath central London.
Science Fiction 2006 115 mins Director: Bong Joon-ho
Bong Joon-ho's barnstorming yet highly original monster movie follows an eccentric family's attempts to rescue the daughter snatched by a huge amphibious creature.
Lodger: A Story of the London Fog
Crime 1926 91 mins Silent Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Ivor Novello plays a strange lodger who may be behind a number of Jack the Ripper-style killings in Alfred Hitchcock’s silent thriller.
The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Period drama 1925 91 mins Silent Director: Rupert Julian
'Man of a thousand faces' Lon Chaney stars in the first version of Gaston Leroux's oft-filmed novel.
By Our Selves
Animation & Artists Moving Image 2015 80 mins Director: Andrew Kötting
The latest psycho-geographical excursion from Andrew Kötting and Iain Sinclair
For Those in Peril
Drama 2013 92 mins Director: Paul Wright
An intense and mysterious drama about the lone survivor of a strange fishing accident who’s outcast and persecuted by his fellow villagers.
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.
Within Our Gates
Drama 1919 74 mins Silent Director: Oscar Micheaux
Oscar Micheaux’s startling silent classic – the earliest surviving feature from an African-American director – presents a fascinating black counterpoint to Griffith’s Birth of a Nation.
Directed by Val Guest
Hell Is a City
Police drama 1959 96 mins Director: Val Guest
Punchy crime thriller with a realist streak as Stanley Baker pursues a fugitive through the streets of Manchester.
Drama 2000 154 mins Director: Liv Ullmann
Ingmar Bergman scripts this semi-autobiographical drama directed by his closest collaborator, Liv Ullmann, about a theatre director facing up to the pain he inflicted upon his muse.
Drama 2004 102 mins Director: Cate Shortland
This intoxicating drama about an adolescent girl's sexual awakening launched the careers of both its star Abbie Cornish and director Cate Shortland.
Drama 2015 113 mins Director: Naomi Kawase
A struggling street food vendor accepts help from an elderly lady with a sensational recipe up her sleeve, in Naomi Kawase's bittersweet drama of culinary redemption.
Khrustalyov, My Car!
Drama 1998 146 mins Director: Alexei German
Aleksei German's hysterical and hallucinatory satire unfolds amid the chaos and paranoia of Stalin's 'doctor's plot' in 1953 USSR.
The Blue Angel
Drama 1930 103 mins Director: Josef von Sternberg
Marlene Dietrich is sensational in her breakthrough role as Lola Lola, star attraction of The Blue Angel beer hall.
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.