Bigger Than Life (1956)

This month’s screening is another Nicholas Ray film from the 1950s, when both he and the film’s star, James Mason, were at their peak. Also starring Barbara Rush and Walter Matthau, Bigger Than Life is an important colour film that was shot in cinemascope. In films like Rebel Without a Cause (1955) and The True Story of Jesse James (1957),…

Somewhere in the Night (1946)

Possibly the most influential genre of American film was not really American at all. Initially it was a cheap, stylistic import that benefited from the factory system operated by Hollywood studios. Moreover, a film noir, as it came to be known, does not have to be totally realistic to become a classic. All it needs are the…

Jeux Interdit (Forbidden Games, 1952)

As part of a month of global inspired activities throughout August comprising “World of Bedminster” celebrations, the next film being screened at SouthBank’s Classic Film Club (on Aug 6) will be Jeux Interdit (aka Forbidden Games). Directed by René Clément in 1952, this film won the Grand Prize at the Venice Film Festival and also an Academy Award…

Summertime (1955)

This month’s screening responds to those who accuse Classic Film Club of showing only black and white movies – though it is none the worse for that! For some, this 1955 film is little more than a travelogue that might have been sponsored by the tourist board – a thin story that is not much…

Black Joy (1977)

Classic Film Club on May 7 will screen another Anthony Simmons film. In Black Joy (1977) Simmons again uses London as his backdrop but this time seen from the perspective of a naïve young immigrant in an episodic narrative adapted from Jamal Ali’s screenplay, Dark Days and Light Nights. PLOT Ben Jones (Trevor Thomas), an innocent African boy…

Quai des Brumes (aka Port of Shadows, 1938)

Although I have not seen this Marcel Carné film for more than 20 years, its images still linger. Last December (2016), when the death was announced (aged 96) of an actor who in 1938 was an enigmatic new-comer (Michèle Morgan), it was these images that returned to me. In a poll made around 1980, Quai…

Obsession (aka The Hidden Room, 1949)

A few months ago we screened Odd Man Out (1947), which featured a scene with Robert Newton (1905 -1956) playing a drunken artist and, although this was not far from the character for which Newton would be remembered (i.e. Long John Silver, the quintessential pirate persona), it was not far either from the larger-than-life repuation…