“It’s extraordinary to see how our audience for the GalleryFilm has changed during these last couple of years,” says Liz Buchanan, who leads the team responsible for the film nights at Dulwich Picture Gallery. “More and more people seem to realise that they can buy tickets at the door and that means we have got a younger audience and also many that are not Friends of the gallery.”
Liz explains that the change in the audience has led to the team being able to pick more demanding and upfront films that deal with important topics and she explains that next season they will show The Killing of Sister George, a film that shook the audiences some decades ago as it was the first major movie to deal with lesbianism and starring a young Susannah York and Beryl Reid as the ageing soap actress.
The coming season has many gems to offer. First off is The Talented Mr Ripley, a dark tale about a charming sociopath who decides that he wants the kind of life that a young preppy socialite leads in Italy with his charming girlfriend and with no money worries. The talents of Mr Ripley are many and through devious means he makes sure he gets what he wants. This is considered one of Patricia Highsmith’s best novels and the director Anthony Minghella has captured the darkness of the book brilliantly. It stars Matt Damon as Ripley and Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow, Philip Seymour-Hoffman and the excellent Cate Blanchett as the young rich Americans – all actors gathering a clutch of Oscars, Golden Globes and BAFTAs for their roles.
Cat on the Hot Tin Roof by Tennessee Williams deserves its iconic status. It deals with subjects that usually were not part of the Hollywood fare in the late fifties like homosexuality, infertility and alcoholism. Elizabeth Taylor fights with her alcoholic husband played by Paul Newman and the two are dominated by his father played by Burl Ives. The feud behind the scenes of the rich Southern family explodes in the heat of the night. The actors were nominated for several awards and the film won an award for best movie of the year. The film has not lost any of its intensity and is now considered a classic.
After two dramatic films time for some light entertainment and Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow is an Oscar winning film about three different women and their fates. It is directed by Vittorio de Sica and stars Sophia Loren and Marcello Mastroianni at their best. One of the three stories is about Adeline who sells black market cigarettes and cannot be sent to jail as long as she is pregnant – seven children later her tired husband wonders if a jail sentence might not bring him some relief. Another tale is about young man studying to be a priest who falls in love with Mara, a top class prostitute and her ways of trying to steer him back to his theological studies.
The season ends with Cabaret based on Christopher Isherwood’s world-weary novel Goodbye to Berlin. It is so much more than a musical and stars Liza Minelli who showed that she has just as much talent as her mother Judy Garland. Michael York plays the young Englishman who falls for her and is drawn into her louche world of nightclubs in Berlin as the Nazi party rises to power. It is directed by Bob Fosse, a veteran from Broadway and the film was nominated for ten Oscars and won eight. No one who has seen the film can forget Minelli’s duet with Joel Grey singing Money makes the World go around. This is a cabaret not to miss.
The GalleryFilm team is not only brilliant at picking films they also create an almost club like atmosphere at the film nights, offering free glass of wine and delicious snacks plus film notes. The chat and chance to meet other film lovers before the film starts is one of the reasons why the audience keeps growing.
Dulwich Picture Gallery, Linbury Room
Bar opens at 7.00
Screening at 7.30
£9, £7 Friends
Tickets available online: http://www.dulwichpicturegallery.org.uk/whats-on,
At the Friends Desk or for credit/debit card bookings (£2 handling fee) at 020 8299 8750
Mon-Fri 10 am – 4pm
The Talented Mr Ripley (1999) Cert 15
Monday 14 September
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) Cert X
Monday 12 October
Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow (1963) Cert A
Monday 9 November
Cabaret (1972) Cert X
Monday 14 December