New April – May season
As a new era begins at the Errol Flynn Filmhouse, with the opening of our second screen on Friday 7 April, a great selection of films is now on sale for April and the first two weeks of May. With the increased flexibility of having another screen, extra film screenings will be added to this schedule to meet demand. We continue to present the best new releases, including Ben Wheatley’s thrilling action film Free Fire and the adaptation of Julian Barnes’ The Sense of An Ending. Brilliant new independent films from around the world include the psychological French thriller Elle, Oscar-winning Persian drama The Salesman and the sensual South Korean film The Handmaiden. Documentaries include a journey into black history with I Am Not Your Negro, while classic screenings include The Elephant Man in memory of the late John Hurt. Special events include more live and encore screenings of performances from the Metropolitan Opera, the Bolshoi Ballet, the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company.
One of the highlights of the coming season is director Paul Verhoeven’s gripping noir thriller Elle, winner of the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film. Set in France, the film sees the Oscar-nominated Isabelle Huppert star as the CEO of a successful video game company who, after being attacked in her own home, tracks down her assailant, drawing them both into a curious and thrilling game. Other top films from around the world include The Salesman, from the acclaimed director of A Separation, Asghar Farhadi. Best Foreign Language winner at the Academy Awards, this taut Iranian drama explores how unexpected cracks can form in a seemingly happy marriage, as two amateur actors prepare for the opening night of their production of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman. Set in Brazil and nominated for the Palme d’Or at Cannes, Aquarius follows a 65 year old widow and retired music critic, as she defies the corrupt developers who are trying to harass her into selling her home.
April’s Q-Film screening is the new film from wunderkind Xavier Dolan, It’s Only the End of the World. Winner of the Grand Prix at Cannes, this French drama features an all-star cast of Marion Cotillard, Léa Seydoux and Vincent Cassel, and tells the tale of a writer returning to his hometown to announce his forthcoming death to his family. May’s Q-Film offering is the ravishing new drama The Handmaiden. Inspired by Sarah Waters’ novel Fingersmith, the film tells the gripping and sensual tale of a young Japanese lady living on a secluded estate and the Korean woman employed as her handmaiden, who is secretly plotting with a conman to defraud her.
The cinema’s selection of top independent movies also includes Certain Women, Kelly Reichardt’s portrait of three women living subtly interlocking lives in rural Montana. Starring Kristen Stewart, Michelle Williams and Laura Dern, the movie won Best Film at the BFI London Film Festival in 2016. In A Quiet Passion, director Terence Davies (Sunset Song) brings the life of 19th century American poet Emily Dickinson to vivid life in a remarkably sensitive biopic. British gangster drama, Trespass Against Us, sees Chad, played by Michael Fassbender, find himself torn between respect for his father (Brendan Gleeson) and a desire to forge a better life for his children.
The latest big releases coming up include Free Fire, the new film from Ben Wheatley (High-Rise), about an arms deal that goes spectacularly and explosively wrong, starring Brie Larson and Cillian Murphy. Olivier Assayas (Clouds of Sil Maria) returns with the ethereal and mysterious ghost story Personal Shopper, starring Kristen Stewart as a high-fashion shopper for the stars who is also a spiritual medium, determined to make contact with her dead twin brother. Set in London’s Blitz in 1940, Their Finest stars Gemma Arterton as an untried screenwriter and Bill Nighy as an eccentric actor, working under fire to make a film to lift the nation’s spirits. In The Founder, Michael Keaton delivers a powerhouse performance in the outrageous true story of Ray Kroc, the charismatic, ruthlessly ambitious entrepreneur who turned the McDonald brothers’ roadside burger joint into a multi-billion dollar empire. Joan Collins and Pauline Collins star in feel-good comedy, The Time of Their Lives, which sees a former Hollywood siren escape her London retirement home with the help of a repressed English housewife, determined to gate-crash her ex-lover’s funeral at glamorous French hideaway. Based David Grann’s bestseller, The Lost City of Z tells the incredible true story of British explorer Percy Fawcett who journeys into the Amazon in the early 20th century, discovering evidence of a previously unknown civilisation. The cast includes Sienna Miller, Tom Holland and Robert Pattinson.
We will also continue to bring back some of the most popular films from recent months, including further chances in April and May to see films such as La La Land, Moonlight, Lion, Hacksaw Ridge and Viceroy’s House.
New releases for families to enjoy over Easter include the animated adventure Sing, about a group of animals trying to return a theatre to its former glory by staging a singing competition, featuring the voices of Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon and Scarlett Johansson. There will also be chances to see the animated action comedy The Lego Batman Movie and the new live action retelling of Disney’s animated classic, Beauty And The Beast. Families can take advantage of a special Easter Holiday Family Ticket Offer of one adult and one child ticket for just £12 for screenings of these three films.
Documentaries coming up include award-winning film-maker Raoul Peck’s I Am Not Your Negro, a cinematic version of James Baldwin’s unfinished book. This radical exploration of race in America tracks the lives of Martin Luther King Jr, Malcolm X and Medgar Evers, and is narrated by Samuel L Jackson. Dancer offers an unprecedented look into the life of a complex young performer Sergei Polunin, the Royal Ballet’s youngest ever principal, who walked away at the peak of his success, driven to the brink of self-destruction by stardom.
The programme of classics includes three films from director David Lynch, coinciding with the long-awaited arrival of a third series of Twin Peaks on TV screens this spring. In addition to the acclaimed dreamlike feature Mulholland Drive, from 2001, and the 1980 neo-noir thriller Blue Velvet, there will also be a chance to see the late John Hurt in the true story of The Elephant Man. The April choice for The University of Northampton’s Cult Film Club is the convention-defying 1984 sci-fi movie, The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across The 8th Dimension, in which the multi-talented adventurer is called upon to save the world from an extra-terrestrial invasion. Other classic screenings include the digitally restored 1975 drama, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, shown in celebration of Jack Nicholson’s 80th birthday and the 1960 Hitchcock masterpiece Psycho. April’s Dementia-Friendly screening is the well-loved Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The King And I.
The Errol Flynn Filmhouse’s programme of event cinema allows audiences to see the best of theatre, opera, dance and music performances from around the world on the big screen in Northampton. Live broadcasts are very popular and are usually programmed further in advance than normal film releases. Cinema-goers can find the most up-to-date details of future live and encore screenings on the website, and advance booking is recommended.
Live screenings in the spring include A Hero of Our Time, by the Bolshoi Ballet, broadcast from Moscow, and the Met Opera Live screenings of Eugene Onegin and Der Rosenkavalier, direct from New York. There will be chances to see productions from the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Rome season, starting with Julius Caesar in April, followed by Antony And Cleopatra and Titus Andronicus later in the summer.
NT Live continues to bring a wide range of screenings, including Ivo van Hove’s production of Obsession, the new stage adaptation of the 1943 film, with Jude Law leading the cast, screened live from the Barbican. The April and May NT Live programme also offers encore screenings (repeat screenings of performances recorded live) for Amadeus, Twelfth Night and Rosencrantz and Gildenstern Are Dead. Looking further ahead into June, July and August, tickets are now on-sale for live broadcasts of Salome and Angels in America Parts I & II, and encore screenings of Peter Pan and Yerma.