NEW FILM OF THE WEEK: Stoker
Oldboy director Park Chan-wook is back with his first English-language film, a psychologically twisted gothic tale from a script that was on the 2010 Black List of best unproduced Hollywood screenplays. At her father’s funeral, India (Mia Wasikowska) is introduced to an uncle she’s never met by her unstable mother (Nicole Kidman). The enigmatic man charms her – but ulterior motives emerge. London’s BFI Southbank is holding a preview screening on February 27 before the film’s March 1 release.
OLD FILM OF THE WEEK: Kiss of The Spider Woman
Based on the novel by Manuel Puig, Argentinian director Hector Babenco’s lauded ‘80s drama turns on two men sharing a Brazilian prison cell: leftist revolutionary Valentin and gay cinefile Luis, who helps them pass the time by recounting scenes from an old Nazi propaganda romantic thriller. As Valentin asks Luis to collaborate, their bond complicates and deepens. Screening at London’s Riverside on February 24 as part of its Deep Desires and Broken Dreams season.
TRAILER OF THE WEEK: The Hunger
Catherine Deneuve stars as an Yves Saint-Laurent-wearing vampire dwelling in a Manhattan townhouse in Brit director Tony Scott’s sultry, 1983 cult classic The Hunger, soundtracked by post-punk band Bauhaus. David Bowie plays her lover, whose time is up, and who begins to rapidly degenerate toward dust. His only hope is an intrigued doctor (Susan Sarandon) who’s researching the ageing process. Screening at London’s Cine Lumiere on February 24 as part of its Fashion and Cinema series.
DOCUMENTARY OF THE WEEK: Fire In The Blood
This anger-rousing, important documentary on medicine and malice shows how western pharmaceutical companies and governments have aggressively blocked access to low-cost AIDS drugs for African nations and the global south, which have been prohibited from manufacturing their own by international patent laws. It supports efforts in mobilising the fight for change. Out on February 22.
EVENT OF THE WEEK: London Turkish Film Festival
The 18th edition of this showcase of the freshest in Turkish cinema is kicking off in London. A highlight this year is director Reis Celik’s smart, visually stunning Night of Silence, which plays out in a honeymoon chamber after the arranged marriage of a village girl to a much older former killer. The festival runs in London from February 21 to March 3 at the ICA, Rio Dalston, Cine Lumiere and Odeon West End.