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BFI 47th London Film Festival

Movie list created by Max the Movie Guy Avatar

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Opening Gala

Desire has rarely been far from the surface in Jane Campion's films, and her skill in revealing the complexities and ambiguities in sex and romance have never been more confidently demonstrated than in her latest film. Based on Susanna Moore's bestselling novel (and adapted for the screen jointly by Moore and Campion), In the Cut combines modern urban love story and detective thriller into a taughtly plotted, intelligent whole. Frannie Avery (Meg Ryan) is an NYU English teacher, drawn out of her self contained, cerebral world when she witnesses an illicit sexual act in a local East Village bar. When the woman she glimpsed is found dead, Frannie is questioned by investigating homicide detective Molloy (Mark Ruffalo). Despite her apparent detachment, she is fascinated by Molloy, and begins a passionate and intensely erotic liaison with him. By the time a second murder occurs, Frannie begins to wonder if the man she's falling in love with might be more dangerous than she had thought. A less adventurous director might have been daunted by this potentially shocking material, but thankfully Campion embraces it, teasing out all its psychological nuances. Around the intensely charged central relationship are two others, between Frannie and her bolder half sister (Jennifer Jason Leigh); and between Molloy and his cruder partner, Detective Rodriguez (Nick Damici), adding richness and depth to the story. These character's roles are nicely drawn and convincingly played, supporting a tremendous Mark Ruffalo as the hard to fathom Molloy, and Meg Ryan giving what must stand as a career best performance as the tough talking but vulnerable Frannie. Gripping and sexy, In the Cut matches its thematic boldness with visual panache, it's Manhattan locations invoking early Scorsese and Toback but made definitively Campion's own.

Sandra Hebron
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Closing Gala

Based on the passionate and turbulent marriage of American poet and novelist Sylvia Plath and English poet Ted Hughes, Sylvia is a classic exploration of creativity and the nature of love. It was whilst a student at Smith College that Plath first attempted suicide, and her fictionalised account of this period 'The Bell Jar', has inspired and influenced two generations of readers. In 1955 Plath came to England on a Fulbright Scholarship, and in Cambridge she met and married the dashing Hughes, cementing one of the literary world's most volatile partnerships. Sylvia follows their seven-year marriage, showing with raw honesty the joy and the pain of their love. It also offers a trenchant take on the difficulties Plath faced as a woman in the late 50s and early 60s, trying to juggle her writing with her role as a wife and mother. For many people, feelings run high about the marriage and its unhappy end. Wisely the film offers a degree of equanimity, resisting the temptation either to sanctify or demonise. Gwyneth Paltrow, commited to the role for a number of years, wins our understanding as the troubled, brilliant writer, driven to the brink of madness by her love. Daniel Craig is a charismatic Hughes, gifted but selfish and ultimately unable to make Sylvia happy. And in a piece of casting serendipity, Blythe Danner, acting alongside her own daughter, has a small but memorable role as Sylvia's fiercely protective mother. Sylvia is only Christine Jeff's second feature, though you wouldn't know it from the assured hand and distinctive eye which she brings to the direction of the film. Whilst respectful of it's literary origins (and there is poetry, judiciously used), this is essentially a sweeping, tragic love story, forcefully told.

Sandra Hebron
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Gala Films and Special Screenings

People who added this item 2534 Average listal rating (1475 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.7
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People who added this item 1888 Average listal rating (996 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.2
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People who added this item 2770 Average listal rating (1693 ratings) 5.5 IMDB Rating 6.2
Freaky Friday (2003)
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People who added this item 4678 Average listal rating (2957 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.8
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Orange Film on the Square

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People who added this item 44 Average listal rating (26 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 6.9
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People who added this item 611 Average listal rating (398 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.6
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People who added this item 4 Average listal rating (1 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 6.2
Cheeky (2003)
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People who added this item 162 Average listal rating (77 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.7
Distant (2002)
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People who added this item 1901 Average listal rating (1060 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 8
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People who added this item 55 Average listal rating (20 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 6.7
Father & Son (2003)
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People who added this item 97 Average listal rating (43 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.1
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People who added this item 23 Average listal rating (16 ratings) 5.7 IMDB Rating 6
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People who added this item 360 Average listal rating (203 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.5
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People who added this item 73 Average listal rating (44 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 6.7
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People who added this item 82 Average listal rating (49 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.3
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People who added this item 178 Average listal rating (126 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 7.3
A Mighty Wind (2003)
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People who added this item 565 Average listal rating (299 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.6
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People who added this item 143 Average listal rating (79 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 7.4
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People who added this item 48 Average listal rating (26 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 6.4
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People who added this item 22 Average listal rating (13 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 7.2
Off the Map (2003)
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People who added this item 104 Average listal rating (52 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.4
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People who added this item 356 Average listal rating (216 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 7.1
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People who added this item 162 Average listal rating (70 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.2
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People who added this item 664 Average listal rating (410 ratings) 6.4 IMDB Rating 7.3
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People who added this item 164 Average listal rating (94 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 6.7
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People who added this item 1843 Average listal rating (1056 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 6.8
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People who added this item 258 Average listal rating (145 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 6.6
Wonderland (2003)
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French Revolutions

People who added this item 28 Average listal rating (9 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 6.2
Eager Bodies (2003)
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People who added this item 0 Average listal rating (0 ratings) 0 IMDB Rating 6.9
The Heat's On (2003)
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People who added this item 12 Average listal rating (7 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 5.6
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People who added this item 6 Average listal rating (1 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 0
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People who added this item 0 Average listal rating (0 ratings) 0 IMDB Rating 6
Mister V. (2003)
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web.archive.org/web/20040216045123/http://www.lff.org.uk/films.php
The (almost) complete programme for the 2003 LFF.

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BFI London Film Festival (17 lists)
list by Max the Movie Guy
Published 2 years, 11 months ago



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