Today: February 22, 2024

The past few years have been deemed by some the golden age of British cinema, bringing forth a new generation of talented filmmakers who have broken the global industry as well as winning homegrown hearts.

The past few years have been deemed by some the golden age of British cinema, bringing forth a new generation of talented filmmakers who have broken the global industry as well as winning homegrown hearts.

But if council estates, countrysides and costume drama are just the surface of what you’re looking for from film, world cinema not only offers the inspiration for some of the most successful films to date but also offers a varied and insightful representation of the values and stylings of other cultures.

To celebrate the offerings of foreign film, the BFI will be holding the BBC Four 2011 World Cinema Awards for its eighth year. Hosted by overseas film fanatic Jonathon Ross, this year’s shortlist has been selected by UK film writers, and includes Pedro Almodovar’s The Skin I Live in starring Antonio Banderos, French offering Of Gods and Men, Palm d’Or winner Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives and Iranian drama A Seperation. For your round up of the best of this year’s foreign cinema the awards will be held at the BFI Southbank on the 15th of November and broadcast on BBC Four on the 20th.

Leeds International Film Festival has a meaty dose of non UK cinema and is challenging London’s this year as it prepares for the largest regional film festival in the country. Notable foreign film premieres on the 2011 programme include French Locarno winner Nana (Valérie Massadian) and Jan Zabeil’s The River Used to be a Man. The festival heavily features global cinema, with selected highlights from Ireland (The Other Side of Sleep) Australia (Toomelah) Japan (Ghost Cat and the Mysterious Shamisen) and France (The Last Screening)spanning across all genres and eras. The festival’s extensive programme lasts until Novmber the 20th, and can be found here.

As if to rival Leeds in a northern international face off, York will be hosting the Aesthetica Short film festival on the same day (November 3rd) as the latest addition to the UK festival circuit. This newborn event leans towards new and promising cinema, taking offerings from across the world and showing them over 15 different locations in the city.

Amongst the global screenings to be shown over the three day festival are environmental disaster drama Be Water, My Friend (Italy) youth documentary Flying Anne (Netherlands) and tragic comedy Bad Lyrics (Poland.) Punctuating these showcases will be talks and classes held by industry members and professionals. Full details can be found at the festival’s website here.


If House of Fools, Brother or the Night/DayWatch instalments have impressed you over recent years, the annual Russian Film Festival in London’s West End will be displaying an array of new wave and acclaimed cinema hailing from the state from the beginning of November. Opening with the premiere of Generation P, an adaptation of Victor Pelevin’s established novel (think Soviet Mad Men) the programme also includes Cannes Special Jury Prize Winner Elena (Andrei Zvyagintsev,) tense farmer drama in Hunter (Bakur Bakuradze) and a showcase of women filmmakers work in On Women By Women. The festival runs from the 4th to the 13th of November, with full the programme and ticket information at the festival’s site here.


An industry that has boasted commercial success from its quirky and sophisticated exports, the French Film Festival makes no exception to this year’s programme with nearly a month’s work of le cinéma français. Domestic A lister Daniel Auteuil has been confirmed at the UK premiere for his directoral debut The Well Digger’s Daughter, with music scored by The King’s Speech’s Alexandre Desplat. In light of the presidential election next year, Xavier Durringer’s The Conquest will be as relevant as it gets as he documents Nicolas Sarkozy’s rise to presidency and his reign of the nation. For an altogether different cinematic experience, a celebration of the work of Louis Feuillade’s silent works will be marked by screening accompanied by a live arrangement composed by Parisian DJs Radiomentale.

The festival will also be presenting French language films from Belgium, Switzerland, Quebec and Luxembourg, as well as Q&As and guest panels. Running from the 9th of November to 6th of December, the programme and ticket options are available on the festival’s site here.


The largest African film festival in the United Kingdom will be held from the 2nd of November at the FilmHouse in Edinburgh. This year’s theme rests on children and youth, fairy tales, identity and animation will feature heavily on the cards for this year’s event, which will broadcast films surrounding children, for children and made by children. There is a short films competition, talks from filmmakers involved in the festival and various opportunities for children to get involved with the festival’s events. A full listing of showings and talks can be found here.


If you are London based and passing your local Picturehouse of an evening, Poland on Screen is suitable for all movie fans and not just the die hard subtitle slave, and is being held right up until September. The cream of Polish cinema is being brought to viewers in a series of mini seasons, including Playing with Form, Reality Bites and Love, The Polish Way everywhere from Stratford to Hackney and over a handful of decades to show off just what the nation has to offer. Screenings and locations can be found at the Poland on Screen hompage here.

Beth Webb - Events Editor

I aim to bring you a round up of the best film events in the UK, no matter where you are or what your preference. For live coverage of events across London, follow @FilmJuice

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