Review: Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020)

Much like its title (already altered to Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey), Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) contains all the right ingredients but can’t help get in the way of itself.

Following Harley (played by Margot Robbie’s sheer sense of enjoyment), the film centres on a rather basic MacGuffin hunt and simple nasty antagonist (although Ewan McGregor is typically bland especially stood next to Chris Messina absolutely killing it as Mr Zsasz). It also features a couple of outstanding fight sequences that perfectly blend the film’s violence and neon glitter aesthetic. When this film moves, it really moves but where it doesn’t fare so well is in the constant diversion. I understand why it does it, the film is narrated by Harley and she is an erratic storyteller, but it often feels like we are stumbling around rather than moving forwards and there just aren’t enough straight lines for our hero to feel like a genuine agent of chaos.

But the good bits are rather good and if you do like this version of Harley Quinn as much as Margot Robbie does, then I suppose the time spent just hanging out will be just as enjoyable.

Recommended.

Our Next Screening: Blade Runner

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Original advert for Blade Runner’s 1982 run at Guernsey’s Gaumont Cinema.

Based in November 2019, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner (1982) remains one of the most iconic sci-fi movies ever made. As a piece of visual design its impact is still being felt, whilst the story it tells is remains a point of debate amongst fans.

It’s also a film that splits opinion.

 

On it’s release in 1982 it wasn’t well received by critics and there are plenty of criticisms that are hard to shake; it’s a detective film without much detecting, its sexual politics were old hat when it was released, and one has to wonder where the film would sit if it hadn’t been revised and re-released in different forms (my set contains five versions!)…

…and yet the film endures and, thirty seven years after it was originally screened at The Gaumont Cinema, we are bringing the original theatrical cut (the ‘European Theatrical Cut’ to be precise) back to the big screen in Guernsey.

The screening takes place at Beau Cinema at 7.30pm on Wednesday 27 November.

Suitable for ages 15+

Tickets £7 – Book Here

Our Next Screening: Diego Maradona

On Wednesday 16 October we are screening Asif Kapadia’s latest documentary Diego Maradona. This is another fantastic film from the director of Senna and Amy.

Constructed from over 500 hours of never-before-seen footage, this documentary centres on the career of celebrated football player Diego Armando Maradona, who played for S.S.C. Napoli in the 1980s.

You can book tickets here

All pre-bookers will be entered into a draw for the chance to take a movie home.

New Podcast Episode: Lords of Chaos

Our Lords of Chaos episode is now available for listening and downloading on Soundcloud, ITunes and other podcast apps.

The episode features Wynter Tyson, Lizze Loveridge and Mat Walters plus an interview with local musician Brett Stewart. In the ‘Afterword’ section we discuss the explosion of popcorn that is Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw.

Cameron Tyson provides the music.

Brett Stewart plays in Guernsey based band Dolmens.

Information on future screenings can be found here.

Our Next Screening: Lords of Chaos (31 July)

On 31 July we are screening Jonas Akerlund’s Lords of Chaos.

Based in Norway in the early 1990s, the film tells the story of Norwegian Black Metal band  Mayhem. It weaves together rock n roll delinquency, death and betrayal and is, by turns, shocking, funny and tragic.

Suitable for ages 18+

Tickets £7 – Book Here

January Screening: Khrustalyov, My Car!

Clameur Du Cinema’s January screening is Aleksey Germain’s Khrustalyov, My Car! (1998).

Originally released in 1998 and presented here in a newly restored 4k scan, Khrustalyov, My Car! focuses on military doctor General Klenski who is arrested in Stalin’s Russia in 1953 during an anti–Semitic political campaign and accused of being a participant in a so-called “doctors plot”. It is regarded as an inspiration behind Armando Ianucci’s The Death Of Stalin (2017), and remains one of Aleksey German’s most enduring and satirical films amongst his exclusive body of work with includes the unforgettable Hard to Be a God (2013).

“Khrustalyov, My Car! is relentless and overpowering, yet the film is often poetic in its blend of pathos, freneticism, surrealism and matter of factness” – Time Out

“In this snowbound fever dream, beauty and anarchic humour co-exist with horror” – The Wall Street Journal

All pre-bookers will be entered into a draw for a copy of The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov and The Death of Stalin by Fabien Nury and Thierry Robin, the comic that inspired the movie.

Suitable for ages 18+

The screening takes place at 7.30pm on Wednesday 30 January 2019.

Tickets can be booked here.

November Screening: The Rider (2018)

7pm, Wednesday 28 November 2018.

Written and directed by Chloé Zhao, The Rider, based on the real experiences of it’s main cast, tells the story of a young cowboy’s search for new identity and what it means to be a man in the heartland of America after a traumatic head injury.

“Movies that blend real life and fiction usually foreground the docu-style realism, using the poetry as grace notes or punctuation. Zhao privileges both, and in so doing creates a work of heartbreaking beauty.” – Bilge Ebiri, Village Voice

 

Suitable for ages 15+

Tickets: £6 – Book Here

Halloween Screening: “No Strings Attached”.

Join us for a Halloween double-bill of two brand new movies that hark back to the era of VHS.

One is a horror inflected tech-thriller and the other is a (fairy)tale of evil cults starring one of the most prolific actors currently working. Both films are from solid film-makers who are responsible for some of the most memorable genre films of recent years and both would look entirely at home on the shelf of a video rental store.

You’ll have fun and, if you pre-book, you’ll be entered into a draw for a 7 film Blumhouse blu-ray boxset.

Suitable for ages 18+

The screening takes place at 7pm on Wednesday 31 October. Tickets cost £8 and can be booked here.

I’m starting a film night!

So, I’ve booked a venue, sorted three films and licensing, and chosen a name. I’m starting a film night.

I’ve screened films before, and talk about them endlessly, but it’s time to actually create a regular film night and share all the new, odd and interesting films that don’t get a look in on Guernsey’s screens. The films are vital, but it’s the audiences that will make it a success and their engagement and enjoyment.

So here we go…

The night is called Clameur Du Cinéma and won’t be as pretentious as it sounds. It takes place on the first Wednesday of every month at Guernsey’s Digital Greenhouse (a great interactive venue) starting on 4 July 2018 with Beast (2017). I’ve also booked Funny Cow (2017) and Phantom of the Paradise (1974). Tickets can be booked here.

Here goes, wish me luck…

Wynter