Alfred Hitchcock – Jamaica Inn (1939)


Vince Leo said this:

“An orphaned young woman named Mary travels to Cornwall to stay with her aunt and uncle in a place called the Jamaica Inn. The downside to this is the fact that the inn is the lair of treacherous and murderous land-pirates, who lure ships in and proceed to kill the ship’s crews and steal everything on board. After discovering the truth, she and one of the pirates who is secretly a police officer, go to the local peace officer for help, little realizing that he is the kingpin for the whole operation. Now their lives are in jeopardy due to the fact that no one can be trusted, and they must fight for their lives.” Continue reading

Peter Adam – Omnibus: Signs of Vigorous Life: New German Cinema (1976)


Pithy half-hour documentary concerning New German Cinema (when it was on fire), focusing on and featuring interviews with “the big five”: Werner Herzog, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Wim Wenders, Volker Schlöndorff & Hans-Jürgen Syberberg

Most notable being the rare interview with a young Herzog, and behind-the-scenes footage of him at work.
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Deborah Haywood – Pin Cushion (2017)


Super close Mother LYN and daughter IONA (Dafty One and Dafty Two) are excited for their new life in a new town. Determined to make a success of things after a tricky start, Iona becomes ‘best friends’ with KEELY, STACEY and CHELSEA. Used to being Iona’s bestie herself, Lyn feels left out. So Lyn also makes friends with BELINDA, her neighbour. As much as Lyn and Iona pretend to each other that things are going great, things aren’t going great for either of them. Iona struggles with the girls, who act more like frenemies than friends, and Belinda won’t give Lyn her stepladders back. Both Mother and Daughter retreat into fantasy and lies. Continue reading

Stanley Haynes – Carnival (1946)


Plot Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Of the many films (English and American) bearing the title Carnival, only one was based on the Compton MacKenzie novel of the same name. This 1946 melodrama stars Sally Gray as a 19th century ballet dancer who makes an unfortunate career move by marrying a taciturn Cornish farmer (Bernard Miles). Sally soon longs for the bright lights of the big city, and for the arms of her artist lover (Michael Wilding). Her husband is all too aware of this; and when the lover comes calling to renew the affair, the husband shoots Gray to death. The first film version of Compton MacKenzie’s Carnival was filmed in 1931 as Dance Pretty Lady. Continue reading

Philip Powrie & Keith Reader – French Cinema: A Student’s Guide (2003)

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The study of French cinema has expanded dramatically in recent years, as it is increasingly taught alongside literature in modern language departments. Many entrants to courses have no previous experience of film study. This book, written by two leading scholars of French film, offers students an introduction to the history and theory of French cinema, while giving them an understanding of the concepts and techniques involved in the study of film. It also contains a model essay, sample film analyses, and an appendix of statistics, filmography, bibliography and glossary, making this book an indispensable and comprehensive resource. Continue reading

Stephen Dwoskin – Chinese Checkers (1965)


Chinese Checkers
Two women play Chinese checkers. Halfway through the film, the women are transformed through masks, make-up and costumes and they drift from a concentration on the board game to a concentration on each other’s hands and eyes, engaging in a game of seduction and lovemaking. Chinese Checkers was shot in New York in 1964 just before Dwoskin moved to the UK. It features Joan Adler and Beverly Grant and is based on a story by American experimental filmmaker Harry Smith. This film is not suitable for young audiences. Continue reading