Saturday, 6 August 2011

This week's new film events

Empire Big Screen, London

Empire magazine has been running Movie Con nights on London's South Bank for several years now, but this event is the first step towards realising the organisers' ambitions to establish a homegrown festival with the scope of San Diego's Comic Con. Starting with the UK premiere of Cowboys & Aliens and closing with Fright Night, presented by star David Tennant, Big Screen promises a mix of screenings, panel events and promo reels of new releases from UK distributors. Workshops include special effects makeup with the boffins behind the upcoming Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, screenwriting with the scribes of The Inbetweeners Movie, and a special presentation by FX legends ILM, the architects of Empire's beloved Star Wars. Costumes are not mandatory, but you might want to take an autograph book.

The O2, SE10, Fri to 14 Aug

LoCo London

Running under the theme of Transformations, this year the London Comedy Film Festival presents a week of multimedia wonders pegged around a short season of body-swap capers. Starting with the Tom Hanks classic Big, the series takes in such lesser-known works as the Steve Martin romp All Of Me, co-starring Lily Tomlin, alongside Dustin Hoffman in drag-dilemma farce Tootsie, Michael J Fox in horror-spoof Teen Wolf, and John Cusack in the defiantly surreal Being John Malkovich. Meanwhile, LoCo's School Of Slapstick will be running an interactive silent-comedy workshop to find the young Buster Keatons of tomorrow.

Wilton's Music Hall, E1, Mon to Fri,

QUAD Outdoor Screenings, Derby

This trio of outdoor screenings seem, at first sight, a predictable choice for their settings. The Duchess, an 18th-century drama romance starring Keira Knightley as the Duchess of Cornwall, was partly filmed at Kedlestone Hall, which later played host to a display of the film's Oscar-winning costumes. Likewise, fellow period drama The King's Speech, which plays at both Kedlestone Hall and Calke Abbey, seems a good fit for such national heritage surroundings. The one to watch out for is Jack Clayton's The Innocents, a great British ghost story from 1961. The organisers are being tight-lipped about specifics but say these screenings come with an off-screen surprise to send you home with an extra shiver. Just be careful where you sit.

Calke Abbey, Kedlestone Hall, Fri to 27 Aug,

Disaronno Italian Film Series, London

Sponsored by Lombardy-based liqueur Disaronno, hosted by Hoxton hipsters The Rooftop Film Club and presented by Lauren Laverne, the TV's acceptable face of popular culture, this short season of Italian-themed films is not what you might expect. For a start, it begins with Baz Luhrmann's flashy Romeo + Juliet, a kinetic retelling of the Bard's Verona-set tale of tragic love. Serious types might prefer Vittorio De Sica's neo-realist classic The Bicycle Thieves, more sentimental types Robert Benigni's still-divisive Holocaust "comedy" Life Is Beautiful. But only the hardest of hearts could resist an alfresco showing of the timelessly romantic Roman Holiday, starring Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn.

Queen Of Hoxton, EC2, Thu to 14 Aug, © Guardian News & Media Limited 2011 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds


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