Archive for October, 2018

#LFF2018 Ray And Liz – Vignettes Of Family Poverty From The Thatcher’s Era

One of the strongest works in the London Film Festival’s excellent selection for the first feature competition, Ray and Liz marks the arrival of an interesting new auteur to British cinema. Like Steve McQueen did a decade ago, Turner-prize nominated artist Richard Billingham bridges the gap between art gallery and art house with this long gestating debut which offers a very personal recollection of his childhood memories as part of a dysfunctional family devastated by the socially damaging policies of the Thatcher era. Read the rest of this entry »

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#LFF2018 Recommended: Too Late To Die Young and Happy Birthday, Colin Burstead


The theme of New Year’s Eve celebrations is instrumental in two of this year’s official competition films. Diametrically opposed in tone, location and intention, they both explore the dramatic possibilities the traditional annual gatherings offer. The first one is Chilean filmmaker Dominga Sotomayor’s evocative coming of age memoir, Too Late To Die Young, in the midst of the summer holidays as it is set in the southern hemisphere. The second, Happy New Year, Colin Burstead, is a BBC commission to be aired as one of the specials in the channels’ festive programming. It gives Ben Wheatley a new chance to flaunt his corrosive sense of humour by putting together a dramedy about a rather traumatic extended family’s gathering. Read the rest of this entry »

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#LFF2018 Recommended: The Plan That Came From The Bottom Up and Wildlife.

After Steve McQueen’s Widows kick-started the London Film Festival in style, here’s our reviews of two of the best films we have watched from this year’s programme so far. Two very different works dealing with personal and financial struggles: a socio-political essay offering proof about the ravages caused by modern capitalism and its neoliberal doctrines (The Plan) and a faithful literary adaptation of one of Richard Ford’s short stories about family hardship (Wildlife). Read the rest of this entry »

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#LFF2018 Recommended: Two Debuts Boasting Strong Political Satires

Among the most thought-provoking and boundary pushing films that we have seen this year, two completely different works: the debut feature of a young Scottish multimedia artist Rachel McLean, Make Me Up, exploring through a hyper-real, technology-ridden fantasy world the ways our society imposes ideals of beauty and perfection on women and their damaging consequences. The second is by former African-American rapper Boots Riley who uses a peculiar blend of comedy, social commentary and science-fiction to criticise the corporate-inducing precarization of the job market in Sorry To Bother You. Read the rest of this entry »

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#LFF2018 – Widows: Steve McQueen’s Triumphant Venture Into Genre

L-R: Michelle Rodriguez, Viola Davis, and Elizabeth Debicki star in Twentieth Century Fox’s WIDOWS. Photo Credit: Courtesy Twentieth Century Fox.

The Opening Gala for this year’s London Film Festival will be remembered as one of the best in recent memory. There were enormous expectations about the follow up to Steve McQueen’s Oscar winning ’12 Years A Slave,’ which the iconoclast British filmmaker have defied by venturing into genre with a slick heist movie adapting Lynda La Plante’s 1983 page-turner ‘Widows.’ La Plante’s bestseller was promptly made into a six-part ITV series the director was impressed by in his youth.

Another best selling writer, Gillian Flynn, was recruited to update the story to our times. Since Flynn’s successful adaptation of her own novel, ‘Gone Girl,’ earned an Oscar nomination, the American author’s body of work has been in great demand – this year we also saw ‘Sharp Objects’ made into an HBO miniseries. And she does not disappoint, with a compact screenplay that brilliantly transplants the many pulp charms, characters and situations of the original novel to contemporary Chicago, being faithful the storyline’s surprising twists and thrills. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Sounds Of #LFF2018 Mixtape

Joan Jett

One more year the London Film Festival’s arrival marks a peak in the calendar of every London cinephile. 2018 is being a vintage year for cinema as the diversity and quality of the programme amply proves. Roberawards will be covering the event, so do check our blog daily for the latest news, reviews and chronicles of everything that happens from the 10th to the 21st of October.

As it is our custom, we begin our coverage previewing the offerings for those who love both music and films. We have put together a Spotify playlist featuring the tracks from the soundtracks (when available) or the artistic subjects on these pictures. This is a particularly rich year for music related films, with a wealth of rock documentaries; pop stars jumping into acting and stunning soundtracks. With a couple of exceptions we couldn’t find tracks for (namely Vs., a drama set in Southend’s rap scene, and the Netflix musical about Camden, Been So Long, which also count among the highlights for music lovers) here’s our track by track preview of the Sounds of the LFF 2018. Read the rest of this entry »

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