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By midlandsmovies, Jun 14 2018 11:05AM



"They sometimes say real life is scarier than horror movies. Those people just aren't watching the right movies!"


So say the organisers of Shock & Gore, a local festival that launched in July 2011 and looks to bring together audiences and film-makers who have a love of horror, science fiction and fantastic films at the oldest working cinema in the UK.


Returning this summer to The Electric Cinema in Birmingham from Friday 27th July to Sunday 5th August, a host of genre screenings make up the brunt of the festival but they also programme stand-up comedy, Q&As, live choirs and all-night events.


Classics like The Old Dark House and the original Cape Fear are accompanied by new films such as Under The Tree and A Prayer Before Dawn. Cult favourites like Buffy The Vampire Slayer and The Prisoner will also be shown, plus their annual party night marks 20 years of Blade and 50 years of Night Of The Living Dead.


Shock & Gore are also hosting a special screening of Ben Wheatley's anarchic High-Rise at the top of Birmingham's iconic Rotunda building and the popular Trash Film Night will be taking to the seas (or, more accurately, Birmingham's canals) for a floating screening of Shark Attack 3: Megalodon.


And on Thursday 2nd August, Conjurer's Kitchen will be presenting the classic movie The Silence Of The Lambs. Master food artist Annabel de Vetten will be cooking up some devilishly sweet treats to accompany a screening of one of the greatest thrillers of the last thirty years.


With a commitment to celebrating not only the work of established genre filmmakers, but also those looking to get their first break and national exposure, the focal point of the festival is always the official Shock & Gore competition. This is where entries from across the globe will be viewed and awards will be given for Best Feature Film and Best Short Film.


The Shock & Gore 2018 short film showcase takes place on Sunday 29th July at 2pm and offers opportunities for snappy jump scares, extreme set pieces and brief snippets of terror. Previous years have featured films from Japan, Dubai, Canada, the US, France and Italy, as well as a number of home-grown shorts.


And you still have time to enter via FilmFreeway at this link: https://filmfreeway.com/ShockGore


Full listings and the special events programme is online at www.shockandgore.co.uk


Plus you can find the festival on Twitter @ShockGore



By midlandsmovies, Apr 13 2018 07:58AM

Flatpack Film Festival 2018


The 2018 Flatpack Film Festival kicks off on Friday 13th April so get ready to experience over 100 events and screenings across venues across Birmingham.


Running until 22nd April, there are plenty of options for all kinds of cinema fans and we take an overview look at some of the best the festival has to offer over the full 2 weeks of fun.




Colour Box

This is a fabulous film lucky dip with a focus on “doing” as much as on “viewing”. This year’s creative playground includes smartphone projectors, Moomin puppets, VR adventures and a massive zoetrope, while in the screening programme you can find the best new family shorts and features from around the world. Colour Box is suitable for all ages, although even more fun if you’re 11 and under!




Birmingham 68

A landmark year internationally, 1968 was also a turbulent time for Birmingham. This eye-opening, city-straddling programme will take you from Digbeth bikers to Erdington psychedelia, from black masses in Solihull to the lost streets of Balsall Heath. On 13-15 April a host of special guests will join us for a weekend of walks, talks and screenings tapping into a range of subjects that still resonate today. Flatpack welcome a range of guests including writer Dilip Hiro and Oscar-winning cinematographer Chris Menges and there's a very rare chance to see a psychedelic Cilla Black satire set in Ladywood.




Optical Sound

Optical Sound explores the love affair between sound and image through a packed weekend of live events and screenings. Expect AV artistry, music documentaries and ingenious gadgets.




Unpacked

A chance to poke around under the bonnet and explore the creative processes behind some of the work on show at Flatpack. At the heart of Unpacked is a day of talks and demonstrations with a fantastic line up of artists, inventors and filmmakers, while at Film Camp the focus shifts from making to showing. Film Camp is designed to gather together film exhibitors from across the Midlands to share their wealth of experience, and to explore fresh approaches to programming and audience development. The event is open to everyone from multi-screen venues and festivals to community cinema organisers and student film groups.




Special Events

Check out Flatpack’s full complement of theatre, performance, live soundtracks, daft parties and a quiz. Highlights include live animation troupe Paper Cinema and a night at the circus to remember.




Features, Shorts and Documentaries

based at the Electric and the Mockingbird, this year's survey of the best new films from around the world is a fantastic trip. For those who don’t know, Flatpack started life as a film night in a pub and the short films are an end in themselves, overflowing with great ideas and indelible images. In 2018 the competition expands to six programmes and will include a bumper crop of UK premieres. Flatpack’s international documentary selection is by turns playful, provocative and strange.


Short Film Competition Pass

The short film competition is the shining jewel in our crown each year and audiences can pick up a pass wo view Is This Some Kind Of Joke, Little Wonders, Signal To Noise, Artefacts, Memory Lane and Breaking Point for just £32.



To buy tickets and to check out the full programme go to the festival's official website - http://flatpackfestival.org.uk


By midlandsmovies, Mar 20 2017 05:33PM

If the Oscars have left you in a lull and blockbuster season seems a million miles away, there’s plenty going on in Birmingham to whet your cinematic appetite.




The Cinematic Time Machine


The Cinematic Time Machine at Birmingham’s Electric Cinema always piques the curiosity of any self-respecting film fan. This season showcases the 40’s and 50’s and provides the opportunity to experience those pictures in the way they were intended: on the big screen! Are you a Kubrick completist but have never seen Paths of Glory? Heard of Howard Hawks but have no idea where to start? Then this could be the season for you. Other highlights include Robert Mitchum in The Night Of The Hunter, the 75th Anniversary of Casablanca and Akira Kurosawa’s highly influential Seven Samurai.


The Cinematic Time Machine runs from the 29th of March to the 29th of April. Head to The Electric Cinema for the full programme.





Flatpack Film Festival


The Flatpack Film Festival takes over venues across the city in early April and the only cliché applicable here is that there’s something for everyone. There’s plenty of Lynchian inspired weirdness on offer with a screening of Mulholland Drive and the iconic Eraserhead, which features a reworking of the score by French synth duo Cercuil.


There’s the Colour Box with screenings for younger film fans and the festival also sees a homecoming screening of Christine Franz’s documentary Bunch of Kunst, which focuses on Nottingham Punk Hop duo Sleaford Mods’ foray into the music industry.


Flatpack Film Festival runs from the 4th till the 9th of April. Further details are available here and the launch event will feature on Midlands Movies in the coming weeks.


Is there anything else movie-related going on across the Midlands that you think we should know about? If so, be sure to let us know.


Robb Sheppard


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