This autumn the BFI will rekindle the nation’s passion for film and television’s most enduring love stories with a major UK-wide season dedicated to LOVE, running from late October to the end of December 2015. A special Summer Love Weekend at the British Museum over the August Bank Holiday (27-29 August) will act as a curtain raiser for the main project.
BFI LOVE will encompass three key themes – The Power of Love, Fools for Love and Fatal Attractions incorporating the heartbreak and longing of epic love stories like Brief Encounter (1945) and My Beautiful Laundrette (1985), cherished and light-hearted romcom classics like When Harry Met Sally (1989) and the darkest tales of obsession, betrayal and danger including True Romance (1993). There will be rereleases of Brief Encounter (6 November), When Harry Met Sally (11 December) and True Romance (20 November) by Park Circus during the season. Alongside a major film and TV programme at BFI Southbank, the BFI will ensure that audiences all over the UK can find that loving feeling via UK-wide theatrical rereleases, DVDs, a collection on BFI Player and bespoke film screenings and experiences up and down the country, presented in partnership with the BFI Film Audience Network (BFI FAN).
Heather Stewart, BFI Creative Director said:
“The power of love is cinema’s most seductive illusion, making our hearts beat faster and shaping our dreams and longings; BFI LOVE will truly be an affair to remember.”
Sunset screenings of romantic classics in the historic grounds of the British Museum will act as a spectacular curtain raiser for BFI LOVE over the August Bank Holiday weekend, with A Room with a View (1985), Badlands (1973) and The Princess Bride (1987) screening consecutively from Thursday 27 to Saturday 29 August. For the fourth year running, the BFI will transform the British Museum and project the films onto a huge, state-of-the-art screen, accompanied by a stellar sound-system to thrill audiences of up to 1,200 each night.
Opening the weekend on Thursday 27 August will be Merchant-Ivory’s elegant production of A Room with a View, adapted from E.M. Forster’s witty Edwardian novel and starring Helena Bonham-Carter in one of her earliest screen roles. A moment of passion threatens to overturn everything when Lucy, a young Englishwoman touring Italy with her older cousin (Maggie Smith), finds herself un-chaperoned in the ravishing Tuscan countryside. Featuring a wonderful British ensemble cast including Simon Callow, Judi Dench and Daniel Day-Lewis, A Room with a View boasts stunning location photography and exquisite period styling, and is a feast for the senses.
On Friday 28 August there will be a screening of Terrence Malick’s extraordinary and beautiful portrait of lovers on the run, Badlands. Filmed in the summer of 1972, but set in a dreamlike and indistinct 1950s America, the film follows 15-year-old Holly (Sissy Spacek) as she falls, against her father’s wishes, for charismatic local greaser Kit (Martin Sheen), trusting implicitly in her protector despite his increasingly violent and anti-social behaviour.
Concluding the weekend on Saturday 29 August will be a screening of Rob Reiner’s endlessly quotable cult classic The Princess Bride. Buttercup’s (Robin Wright) dreams of a life with farm boy Westley (Cary Elwes) don’t go quite as she might wish when she hears of his apparent tragic death at sea. Heartbroken, she acquiesces to bad guy Prince Humperdinck, but is kidnapped by an unforgettable trio of outlaws and set on a path to adventure. This timeless cult fantasy combines New York wit, classic British character acting, and knowing but heartfelt storytelling to brilliant effect.
Details of the full programme for BFI LOVE, including screenings, events, film and DVD releases, special guests and more, will be revealed on Tuesday 15 September at BFI Southbank.