Wednesday, 4 September 2013

BFI London Film Festival: Preview

Stop the presses! Well, we've always wanted to say that, but in this case, we've got breaking news. The line up for the 57th BFI London Film Festival has just been announced, and it's set to be an event to remember.

With 234 fiction and documentary features, along with screenings of 134 live action and animated shorts, there's a lot to take in - so we've compiled our list of things we're more than a little excited about for your pleasure and convenience.

Opening and Closing Galas

The crown jewels of any film festival, this year's LFF is set to run a Tom Hanks double bill to open and close the event.

Opening with Captain Phillips and closing with Saving Mr. Banks, we take the journey from a hijacked container ship to the world of Walt Disney and P.L. Travers - not a trip many make, but we'll be interested to see what the outcome is.

Sponsor Galas

What can we say, we're big fans of anything with 'gala' in the name apparently. With six principal galas in this category, there's a lot to watch out for, so here's the CliffNotes version...

American Express Gala - Philomena (one woman's search for her lost son - Judi Dench, Steve Coogan)
Accenture Gala - 12 Years A Slave (based on a true story, a free black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery - Chiwetel Ejiofor, Brad Pitt)
American Airlines Gala - Gravity (surviving astronauts on a damaged space shuttle - Sandra Bullock, George Clooney)
Centrepiece Gala - Inside Llewyn Davis (singer-songwriter navigating 1960s New York folk scene - Oscar Isaac, Carey Mulligan)
May Fair Hotel Gala - Labour Day (mother and son encounter an escaped convict who isn't what he seems - Kate Winslet, Josh Brolin)
Festival Gala - The Invisible Woman (based on the story of the affair between Charles Dickens and Nelly Teman - Ralph Fiennes, Felicity Jones)


Here at Tantrum, we're a big fan of shorts. After the success of The Lion at Edinburgh Film Festival (and yes, we'll go on about that short until the whole world has seen it), we're addicted to finding the next big thing - and letting you know all about it.

With everything from London Calling, featuring local filmmakers, to the Love Will Conquer All programme, exploring affection, the BFI LFF is set to cater for your short attention span and capture your attention all at once.

Surprise Film

With last year's triumph of Silver Linings Playbook still ringing in the ears of all of those brave enough to take the plunge, we can't recommend picking up a ticket to see the Surprise Film more. Come on, in this day and age, a little mystery is a good thing - and definitely unique. Take a chance and you might just see the next big thing before everyone else - what more could anyone want?


Finally, we come to an excellent project showcasing a few restored cinematic triumphs. The strand also launches BFI's exploration of the dark heart of Gothic film (which regular cinemagoers might have seen the trailer for) with La Belle et la Bête, which Tantrum is extremely excited about! It's an impressive list of newly updated cinematic riches and it's well worth watching. You heard it here first.

The 57th BFI London Film Festival runs from the 9th-20th of October, at a number of London cinematic venues. Tickets will be available from September 20th.