02/10/2019 Way To Blue’s Resident Cinemaniac @ LFF
Today marks the beginning of the 2019 BFI London Film Festival. After only managing to catch four films at last year’s LFF – shameful for Way To Blue’s self-professed film fanatic – this time around I made a vow to consume as much cinematic goodness as my budget and spare time would permit. Considering I’ve got 16 films lined up for the next nine days, I’d say mission thoroughly accomplished.
This year’s LFF is an embarrassment of riches, showcasing some of the year’s most hotly anticipated films that have already debuted at other festivals – Scorsese’s long gestating The Irishman, the star-studded murder mystery Knives Out, the Mr Rogers ode to kindness A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood – along with an impressively curated selection of British and world cinema. Particularly notable is the breadth of films from female filmmakers, and the diversity of storytelling on offer. Sign me up.
Kicking off in style tonight, Armando Iannucci’s – everyone’s fave – The Personal History of David Copperfield serves as the Opening Night Gala. But I’m not seeing that one until Saturday, so until then. First up tonight for me is Clemency, which took the top prize at Sundance at the beginning of the year and has been earning career best reviews for Alfre Woodard – an all-too rare opportunity for the brilliant veteran actress to sink her teeth into a leading role, portraying a conflicted and world-weary Death Row prison warden. Head-scratchingly it’s yet to be picked up by a distributor in the UK – likely to change after the fest boosts its profile here – but I have high hopes for this one.
Let the nine day cinematic marathon begin! (let’s see if I’m quite as enthusiastic this time next week).