R$N Flix Pix 12/05/12 – 15/05/12

Art & Culture


The return of the T… or simply some more lovely London cinema picks from Mr Turner…

Saturday 12th: 'The Never Ending Story' (23:30, Screen On The Green)
In the words of Lionel Hutz, '…one of the most blatant examples of false advertising I've ever encountered.' And it was followed by two sequels, as if to rub his poor face in it. One of the most expensive films of the eighties and every bit as eerily attractive on the eyes as Jim Henson's work at the same time. Oddly, it came in under budget at the box office, well behind similar films such as 'Dark Crystal' and 'Time Bandits', but it's popularity amongst audiences of all ages has endured just as healthily, meaning that today it is still considered worthy of being screened hours after most kids bed time.

Sunday 13th: 'Battleship Potempkin' (13:45, Rio)
Another example of a film that can be rammed down people's throats as a 'key' point in film history, or worse, an 'important' film. Terms like this tend to dissuade people rather than encourage them, instilling guilt and feelings of inferiority rather than enthusiasm and eagerness. So, forget this advice about 'Battleship Potempkin'. In truth, it's not a particularly approachable or accessible film, so if you have seen it and didn't enjoy it, there's nothing wrong with you and don't worry. But, the school of Russian Cinema that birthed it, Soviet Montage, is the key movement in the development of editing techniques that have permanently affected audiences perception of film, so if you really wish to trace back why we digest films the way we do, you can't do much better than this.

Monday 14th: 'Bonnie & Clyde/Natural Born Killers Double Bill' (18:45, Prince Charles)
This is a really nice book-ending of the outlaw couple film. Sure, there are notable pre-Bonnie & Clyde examples (noir's such as 'They Live By Night' and 'Gun Crazy' should be checked out by fans of this double bill). These choice's also highlight the fact that films like this dried up after the early nineties. Really not sure why that happened. This is probably the double bill in this series that needs the least explanation; a girl, a guy, a car and guns seems like the simplest formula for cinematic bliss there ever was. So just go.

Tuesday 15th: 'Robocop' (21:10, Clapham Picturehouse)
I wonder sometimes, when watching films such as this, if they were meant to date badly. 'Robocop' obviously does not take itself too seriously, so perhaps it's overly modernistic approach was intended, to some small degree, to insure and continue to nurture a cult following, hungry for awkward material to mock-like. Still, it's an acute and satisfying bit of genre slicing (cop film with sci-fi thriller) and the fact that it lives on as a slightly crap version of the significantly more successful terminator series adds to it's dilapidated appeal. A nostalgic treat.

Laurence Turner