Tomek and Gucia are a pair of seven-year-olds. On a beautiful, sunny afternoon, they engage in typical children’s games after school – playing hopscotch and hide-and-seek, doing somersaults on the beater and climbing the wall. But above all, they play with each other – the boy tries to turn the girl into a boy named Piotrek. However, behind childhood games there is something much more serious – the first feeling.
A rich and challenging account of the experiences of a German Jewish musician who settled in Britain to escape Nazi persecution. Two of his friends are being sued by a former SS Kommandant, who denies their accusation that he was responsible for the genocide of 300 Belgians. Documentary interviews and archive footage merge with dramatised scenes to create a new way of representing history and memory.
A film about black women in South Africa filmed secretly with the help of two black women journalists. Through interviews with five typical women, and comments from four women activists, including Winnie Mandela, the film clearly shows the devastating impact of apartheid on black women and their families. Narration by Peggy Phango.
This short fiction has much to say about kindness, although without any dialogue. In a combination of live action and animation, we are introduced to a man who discovers a small plant hidden under the snow and takes it inside his house. The plant responds to his loving care with rather startling enthusiasm.
A first film made almost single-handedly on a tiny budget, this is an admirably ambitious stab at the documentary-essay form familiar from films like Chris Marker’s Sunless. A brazenly personal response to Calcutta, it attempts to delve beyond the facile notions the West entertains about the city (‘an example of wretched over-population’), and combines vivid visuals with a narration that plunges fearlessly into economics, politics, religion, sociology and philosophy. Adverts, movie clips, comic strips, stills of the director’s mother, footage of religious ritual and street life merge into a complex web of ideas that are neither hackneyed nor obvious. A tantalising effort.
Adapted from an Appalachian Jack Tale set in the late 1940s, this tale follows a World War II veteran named Jack who, in return for an act of kindness, receives two magical gifts: a sack that can catch anything and a jar that can show whether a sick person will recover or die. Jack becomes a national hero when he rescues the president’s daughter from a serious illness by capturing Death in his magic sack. However, after many years without Death in the world, Jack realizes that he has upset the natural order and releases Death to save humankind from perpetual old age and misery.
This ecologically-minded film builds on the contrasts of idyllic, untouched nature and small communities versus the world of rigid, faceless, gigantic machine monstrosities. This film that was created at the time of mass demonstrations against the levelling of Transylvanian villages and the barrage system on the Danube in the late 1980s was inspired by the novel Farewell to Matyora by Valentin Rasputin about a Siberian village flooded because of the construction of a hydroelectric power station.
This movie tells the story of the early life and rise to fame and fortune of French fashion designer Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, beginning with her upbringing in an orphanage and training as a milliner, but concentrating on her relationship with Etienne de Balsan and her tempestuous love affair with his friend Boy Capel, and the role the two men played in setting her up as an independent business woman.