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Art at the Frontier of Film Theory Workshop: Laura Mulvey and Lucy Reynolds

By Russell Banfield Strange and Magical. That’s how Laura Mulvey described this exhibition of her and Peter Wollen’s extraordinary impact on film theory, art history, and avant-garde filmmaking. Letters, diagrams, sketches, scripts, and notes are all displayed relating to four of the six films Mulvey and Wollen made together: Penthesilea: Queen of the Amazons (1974), Riddles of the Sphinx (1977),Crystal Gazing (1982), and Frida Kahlo and Tina Modotti (1983). Also included are outlines to three unmade film projects, notes and catalogues of Wollen’s exhibitions of ‘Komar & Melamid: History Painting’ (1985), ‘On the Passage of a Few People Through a Rather Brief Moment in Time: The Situationist International’ (1989),…

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A Conversation Up in the Sky: a preview of Adam Kossoff’s ‘Through the Bloody Mists of Time’

  By Fernando Chaves Espinach Walter Benjamin and Humphrey Jennings never met, but the two intellects surely have much to say to each other in Adam Kossoff’s new film. On February 8th, the Birkbeck Institute for the Moving Image (BIMI) at the Birkbeck Cinema enjoyed their impossible conversation as a preview screening of Through the Bloody Mists of Time, a work in progress that returns to Kossoff’s concerns about montage, urban spaces, and the dialectical image. The film purportedly shows a slowed-down version of a 9.5mm film shot by Jennings during the Paris Exposition of 1937, when the horrors of war were about to fracture…

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Let Them Speak: Women’s Voices in Helena Solberg’s short films

Author: Fernando Chaves Espinach Date: 12/02/2019 The final sequence of The Interview (1966) is jarring. After watching a woman preparing for her wedding and listening to middle-class women voicing their opinions on sexuallity and education, we cut to agitation in the streets. Manifestations, placards, masses: society in turmoil, at the gates of a military dictatorship. Such a break in mood emphasizes what later became appreciated in the Brazilian director’s cinema: her relentless highlighting of the political dimension of women’s private lives. The Interview was the first of three short films shown on February 8th at the Birkbeck Cinema in a programme curated by Patricia Sequeira…

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Marilyn Monroe: a reappraisal

This recording comes from a discussion between Laura Mulvey and Jacqueline Rose following a screening of Niagara (1953). The recording can be accessed here: https://backdoorbroadcasting.net/2019/02/marilyn-monroe-a-reappraisal/?fbclid=IwAR0Z0Or0loxyliV9jINq-Wz0U28EyyRfhHrDFSrjy_gPPkzs35tQ4s4gnkg Niagara (1953) A newlywed couple, the Cutlers, arrive at Niagara Falls and meet another couple, the Loomis', of differing ages, who are always arguing. Mrs Cutler spies Mrs Loomis kissing another man, and learns that they are planning to murder the husband. He, however, kills the boyfriend first, and then his wife on an observation tower above the falls, before drowning in the falls himself. (BFI) Trailer for Niagara (1953) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjTNi6CazRQ  

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From Animation to Martial Arts: Toward Transcendence of False Movements

This event is part of the Annual University of Pittsburgh Lecture. Event Registration: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/annual-pittsburgh-lecture-from-animation-to-martial-arts-tickets-53907142715 Jinying Li - Assistant Professor of Film Studies, University of Pittsburgh Animation (donghua pian) and martial arts films (wuxia pian) have demonstrated close affinity with each other in the history of Chinese cinema. They overlap historically and conceptually. The martial arts films frequently rely on various animation techniques (e.g. stop motion, cel animation, computer graphics) to create special effects in spectacular fighting scenes. Chinese animations often take their narrative and visual references from the genre conventions of martial arts, featuring fighting warriors and heroic fantasies in exotic sceneries in animated imagery.…

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Peltz Gallery Internship

Peltz Gallery Internship Applications now open for 2018/19 Deadline: 10am, 16th November 2018 Send your CV and letter of application here: mbarri02@mail.bbk.ac.uk About the Internship In this position the successful candidate will be tasked with assisting with the organisation, documentation and administrative support for an upcoming exhibition on the work of Laura Mulvey and Peter Wollen. You will be required to work for approximately 3.5 hours per week during term time, which equates to 30 weeks total over the academic year. Hours and allocation may vary depending on workload and events. This position is marked at Grade 5 of the College’s London Pay Scale which equates…

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Crafting Resistence: Interview with Jasmine Gideon

‘Crafting Resistance: the art of Chilean political prisoners’ examines how craftwork made by political prisoners during their internment in the 1970s by the military regime led by General Pinochet has contributed to the mental health and well-being of those involved, particularly following their exile to the UK. The film engages with important issues around forced migration, well-being and resistance, showing how even in the most extreme circumstances it is sometimes possible to exert a degree of agency and demonstrate resistance. Given the longevity of the Chilean experience, the film illustrates how people live with the aftermath of torture and incarceration. The film is directed by…

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Tragedy and Sexuality: Black Narcissus

by Billy Stanton On Friday 15th June the ‘Tragedy and Sexuality’ series at Birkbeck cinema, organised by James Brown and on this occasion introduced by Carmen Mangion, concluded its current program of screenings with the classic Black Narcissus, one of the jewels in the crown not just of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger but of the wider British cinema. The film itself glows on the big screen, even without the benefit of a 35mm print; Jack Cardiff’s cinematography, his exquisite balancing of bright and misty blues and overheated, fire-and-brimstone reds, is a marvel of design, deliberation and deep understanding of the ways colour can signal,…

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Ulrike Ottinger: Director’s Statement on Chamisso’s Shadow

Across the weekend of July 20th-22nd we will be presenting the UK premiere of Chamisso's Shadow in partnership with The Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media (CREAM), the Goethe-Institut and LUX and with support from the Open City Documentary Film Festival, and in association with the German Screen Studies Network. Below, reproduced from the director's website, is Ulrike Ottinger's statement on the film:  "Despite all their differences, the native groups living along the coast have one thing in common: they live from and with the ocean. I would like to observe their current living conditions, get to know and talk to them and…

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BIMI Children’s Film Club: Lotte Reiniger

by Billy Stanton Saturday 9th June saw the return of the Children’s Film Club to Birkbeck Cinema with a special presentation of six fairytale animations from German film-maker Lotte Reiniger, hosted and presented by Esther Leslie. Screened were Puss in Boots (1954), Aladdin and the Magic Lamp (1954), Cinderella (1954), The Sleeping Beauty (1954), Hansel and Gretel (1955) and Jack and The Beanstalk (1956). The last of these was the only film made in colour (however the colour only stretches as far as background paintings, Reiniger’s familiar silhouetted characters remaining steadfastly black and shadowy). As Esther Leslie explained, the films were chosen specifically to offer…

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