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Barbican Cinema September 2019 highlights

Curated by the Barbican:  

  • Life Rewired Shorts x The Smalls + Filmmaker Q&A
  • Architecture on Film: PUSH + ScreenTalk
  • Preview: For Sama + ScreenTalk
  • Anime’s Human Machines (part of Life Rewired)
  • Science on Screen: 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • Leytonstone Loves Film
  • Chantal Akerman Event: Là-bas + Live readings
  • Family Film Club

Also Screening at the Barbican:

  • New Towns, Our Towns: Stories on Screen + ScreenTalk
  • Underwire Film Festival
  • Japanese Avant-garde and Experimental Film Festival

Event Cinema:

  • National Theatre Encore: Small Island
  • National Theatre Encore: The Lehman Trilogy
  • Margaret Atwood: Live in Cinemas
  • Afternoon Arts: Canaletto and the Art of Venice
  • NT Live: Fleabag
  • Met Opera Encore: Aida
  • Afternoon Arts: Oscar Wilde Encore - A Woman of No Importance
  • National Theatre Live: One Man, Two Guvnors
  • National Theatre Encore: Fleabag

Curated by the Barbican:

Life Rewired Shorts x The Smalls + Filmmaker Q&A
Sat 7 Sep 4.30pm, Cinema 1
Commissioned by the Barbican in collaboration with global video platform The Smalls; this selection of shorts has been made with a unique take on the Barbican’s 2019 Life Rewired season; covering issues including: Artificial Intelligence, ageing, relationships and technology, modern fertility and surveillance.

Architecture on Film: PUSH (London Premiere)
+ ScreenTalk with Director Fredrik Gertten
(Sweden, 2019, Fredrik Gertten, 92 mins)
Wed 11 Sep 6.30 pm, Cinema 1
Skyrocketing prices. Faceless landlords. A global housing crisis. With devastating clarity, the documentary PUSH illuminates the shadowy transformation of the city into an epic financial instrument. Who and what are cities for, when we can’t afford to live in them?

Sociologist Saskia Sassen, economist Joseph Stiglitz, and Gomorrah author Roberto Saviano help illuminate a crisis that makes gentrification look almost quaint, when the full scale of global finance’s conversion of real estate into a tradable asset – a market currently valued at more than double the combined GDP of every country in the world – is understood. An essential film exploring the 21st century city.

Preview: For Sama + ScreenTalk with special guests (TBC) #
UK 2019, Dirs Waad Al-Kateab, Edward Watts, 95 min
Wed 11 Sep 6.15 pm, Cinema 2
Winner of the Golden Eye at Cannes 2019, this timely documentary is both an intimate and epic journey into the female experience of war in Syria. A rare and horrifying first-hand account of the conflict that destroys lives, from filmmaker Waad al-Kateab.

Anime’s Human Machines (part of Life Rewired)
12-30 Sep, Cinema 1
Throughout September Barbican Cinema presents Anime’s Human Machines, a major film season showcasing the enduringly popular and relevant genre, Japanese Animation.

Anime has questioned our relationship to technology for decades, creating some of the most compelling human-robots and robot-humans in all of cinema.

The films showing here confront the onslaught of technology and screen as part of Life Rewired, a Barbican cross-arts and learning season running throughout 2019, exploring what it means to be human when technology is changing everything.

Curated by anime expert Helen McCarthy and produced by Barbican Cinema, this season features eight landmark films, from trailblazing low budget titles such as the cyberpunk Tetsuo, The Iron Man (1989, Dir Shin'ya Tsukamoto), to later films including Macross Plus The Movie (1995, Dir Shôji Kawamori), Metropolis (2001, Dir Rintaro), and Ghost in the Shell (1995, Dir Mamoru Oshii), the latter Introduced by Shōji Kawamori, anime creator, and mechanical designer on Ghost in the Shell. The more recent titles Paprika (Japan 2006 Dir Satoshi Kon) and Summer Wars (2009, Dir Mamoru Hosoda) will also play.

Japanese animation has embraced robotics, cybernetics and artificial intelligence as major themes. It uses these to explore complex moral and social questions: humanity’s responsibility for its actions, response to the other, greed, short-termism and a failure to care for the ecosystem that sustains us.
All screenings in the season will be introduced by Helen McCarthy.

Anime’s Human Machines is an Official Event of the Japan-UK Season of Culture 2019-2020, and has been kindly supported by Wellcome and The Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation and is presented in association with the Japan Foundation.

For further information:
To view the full press release: 

Science on Screen: 2001: A Space Odyssey
US & UK, Dir Stanley Kubrick, 142 min
Tue 17 Sep 6.30pm, Cinema 1

Professor Peter Robinson discusses the development of human-like machines and computer systems alongside a restored version of Stanley Kubrick’s sci-fi masterpiece.

Leytonstone Loves Film

Fri 27–Sun 29 Sep 2019
Sat 11am – Late & Sun 11am–6pm

This free, weekend-long festival is designed to celebrate film culture and Leytonstone’s unique cinema history, supported by local residents and organisations, the Barbican and Waltham Forest Borough of Culture 2019.

Audiences will enjoy a range of film experiences from new release screenings and specialised art house programmes to shorts made both locally and internationally. There will also be workshops and activities exploring everything from the magic of Hitchcock’s dolly zoom to DIY smartphone filmmaking, as well as screen art installations.

The programme also includes DIY filmmaking with a screening of Tangerine, a mini smartphone film-festival for budding filmmakers run by Last Frame Film Club as well as celebrating classics such  Buster Keaton’s silent cinema gem, The General (US, 1926) as part of a live score and light show by band Haiku Salut presented by The Music Halls project.

Chantal Akerman: Là-bas + Short PG* + Live readings
Belguim & France 2006, Dir Chantal Akerman, 78 min
Sat 28 Sep 4pm, Cinema 2

A screening of Chantal Akerman’s Là-bas and But elsewhere is always better (Vivian Ostrovsky, 2016), to launch the publication of Akerman’s memoir My Mother Laughs by Silver Press, programmed in collaboration with A Nos Amours.

Includes live readings from the memoir by Deborah Levy, and others to be announced.

Also screening at the Barbican:

New Towns, Our Towns: Stories on Screen (U) + ScreenTalk
Tue 3 Sep 6.30pm, Cinema 2
This collection of archive shorts explores the history and ideas behind new towns such as Stevenage, Hatfield and Basildon, celebrates the unique social history and heritage of these pioneering towns. Featuring glimpses of the original rural landscapes before they were transformed for the new arrivals from London, New Towns, Our Town from the Independent Cinema Office sheds light on the experiences of the early pioneers as well as
following generations.

This screening is followed by a discussion with Jemma Buckley (Independent Cinema Office)Will Jennings (Visual Artist and Writer) and Georgia Wrighton (Senior Lecturer in Town Planning at the University of Brighton).

Underwire Festival
14-21 Sep, Cinema 2

The UK’s largest film festival celebrating female talent across the industry returns, with short films, Q&As and talks that spotlight a range of female made stories.

Japanese Avant-garde and Experimental Film Festival 2019 
20-22 Sep, Cinema 3

This year’s festival examines national identity, cultural memory and perceptions of history through a programme of repertory cinema and contemporary experimental short film.

Fierce satires and poetic meditations on existence from the post-war period are interwoven with expressive and intimate reflections on ‘being’ in present-day Japan.

The festival showcases some of Japan’s most cult films from the 1960s to the 1980s. Audiences will encounter Yukio Mishima’s aesthetic extremism, in the scathing institutional satire of Death by Hanging (1968, Dir Nagisa Oshima) and a barbed view of the US occupation in Pigs and Battleships (1961, Dir Shohei Imamura).

Showing alongside these films are new experimental works from filmmakers and video artists that engage with life in contemporary Japan, or that contend with memory and history.

Event Cinema

National Theatre Encore: Small Island (12A)
Sun 1 Sep 2pm, Cinema 3

Small Island embarks on a journey from Jamaica to Britain, through the Second World War to 1948 – the year the HMT Empire Windrush docked at Tilbury.

National Theatre Encore: The Lehman Trilogy (12A)
Sun 8 Sep 2pm, Cinema 3

Sam Mendes (Skyfall, King Lear) returns to the National to direct Ben Power's English version of Stefano Massini’s vast and poetic play.

Margaret Atwood: Live in Cinemas (12A)
Tue 10 Sep 7.30pm, Cinema 1

On the eve of the highly anticipated sequel to The Handmaid's Tale, an exclusive live cinema broadcast of Margaret Atwood in conversation.

Exhibition on Screen: Canaletto and the Art of Venice (U)
Afternoon Arts
Thu 12 Sep 2pm, Cinema 2

This season opens with an immersive journey into the life and art of Venice’s famous view painter. This remarkable display of over 200 paintings and drawings offers unparalleled insight into the artistry of Canaletto.

National Theatre Live: Fleabag (15)
Thu 12 Sep 7.30pm, Cinema 3

Broadcasting live from London’s West End, the award-winning, one-woman play written and performed by Phoebe Waller-Bridge. This hilarious play that inspired the hit TV series, is a rip-roaring look at some sort of woman living her sort of life and has sold out all performances in New York and now the West End.

Met Opera Encore: Aida (#)
Sun 15 Sep 3.30pm, Cinema 3

Soprano Anna Netrebko and mezzo-soprano Anita Rachvelishvili offer blazing performances in Verdi's grand drama of ancient Egypt, seen in a stunning production by Sonja Frisell. Nicola Luisotti conducts Verdi’s Aida from the 2018–19 season.

Afternoon Arts: A Woman of No Importance (U)

Oscar Wilde Encore
Thu 26 Sep 2pm, Cinema 2

Olivier award-winner Eve Best and BAFTA-nominated actress Anne Reid star in this production of Oscar Wilde’s glittering and witty comedy, directed by Dominic Dromgoole.

National Theatre Live: One Man, Two Guvnors
National Theatre Encore
Thu 26 Sep 6pm, Cinema 1
Featuring a Tony Award-winning performance from James Corden, the hilarious West End and Broadway hit One Man, Two Guvnors returns to cinemas to mark National Theatre Live’s 10th birthday.

National Theatre Encore: Fleabag (15)
Fri 27 Sep 6.30pm, Cinema 2
In this repeat screening, originally broadcast live from London’s West End, we present Fleabag, the award-winning, one-woman play by Phoebe Waller-Bridge.

New Releases

It: Chapter Two #
US 2019, Dir Andy Muschietti, 110 min
From Fri 6 Sep
Twenty-seven years after their first terrifying encounter with Pennywise, the Losers club must reunite once more. From writer Stephen King.

For Sama #
UK 2019, Dirs Waad Al-Kateab, Edward Watts, 95 min
From Fri 20 Sep
This award-winning documentary explores the female experience of war in Syria. A rare and horrifying first-hand account of the conflict that destroys lives, from filmmaker Waad al-Kateab.

The Day Shall Come #
UK 2019, Dir Chris Morris, 88 min
From Fri 20 Sep
Master satirist Chris Morris brings us his first film, since the critically acclaimed Four Lions, it’s a wild, riotous farce exploiting the absurdities of post-9/11 FBI sting operations.

The Kitchen #
US 2019, Dir Andrea Berloff, 112 min
From Fri 20 Sep
Melissa McCarthy, Elisabeth Moss and Tiffany Haddish take on the roles of 1970s New York gangsters when their husbands are sent to prison in this crime-drama.

The Goldfinch #
US 2019, Dir John Crowley
From Fri 27 Sep
A boy in New York is taken in by a wealthy Upper East Side family after his mother is killed in a bombing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Starring Nicole Kidman, Sarah Paulson, Finn Wolfhard and Ansel Elgort.


Barbican Family Film Club 
Show and Tell with pianist, Lillian Henley: Lotte Reiniger’s Fairy Tales (PG)
Sat 14 Sept 11am, Cinema 2 - age recommendation: 5+
Germany 1922-1961, approx. 70min

Family Film Club returns with a special event featuring a selection Lotte Reiniger’s silhouette fairy tales accompanied live by the pianist Lillian Henley. In between the films, Lillian will give an insight into what she does as a silent film musician and how she helps the audience follow the stories on screen.

Draw Your AI Avatar 
(Suitable for 9 to 13 year-olds)
Sat 14 Sep 2019, 13:00, Fountain Room, Level G, Barbican Centre
In this session attendees will be encouraged to draw their own AI avatar. 

Draw Your Robot Manga Sidekick 
(Suitable for 14-19 year olds)
Sat 14 Sep 2019, 15:00, Fountain Room, Level G
In this session participants will bring their own favourite gadget to life as a manga character.  

Barbican Family Film Club
Kirikou and the Sorceress (U) - Age recommendation: 4+
Sat 21 Sept 11am, Cinema 2
France 1998 Dir. Michel Ocelot 70min Dubbed
Based on a West African folk tale, the story follows the diminutive Kirikou, a young boy who refuses to be believe those who say he is too small to help his village, and he shows how honesty and bravery can overcome even the most fearful of opponents. A masterful animation from Michel Ocelot with music from the legendary Youssou N’Dour.

Family Film Club Workshop 
Sat 28 Sep 10am, Cinema 2 & 3 Foyer

11am, LIAF Shorts Programme (U*)
Cinema 2, Dir. Various approx. 70min
Featuring bite-sized stories from all over the world, this selection of short films from the London International Animation Festival is an opportunity to introduce younger audience to the joy of animation and the big screen experience.

Full programme online.  

Parent and Baby Screenings
Specially tailored screenings of the best new films every Monday and Saturday mornings for parents and carers with babies of twelve months and under.