East End Film Festival

Do you love film? Then the opening of the East End Film Festival – one of the UK’s largest film festivals – is going to come as pretty exciting news. It’s a collection of international premieres, pop up screenings and immersive live events designed to big up independent filmmakers.

You’ll find plenty of films here which are innovative and perhaps challenging, too. It’s like the opposite of watching Frozen at The Odeon Leicester Square.

Image: Don’t Be Nice 

Films that have caught our attention include Pili, a social-realist story about a mother of two struggling to keep her HIV status secret – 65% of the cast are non-actors and the film won an award at Dinard British Film Festival. Heartwarming comedy The Bromley Boys is about a misfit teenager with an obsession with Bromley FC and there’s a screening of John Carpenter’s classic The Fog – a must-watch if you’ve never seen it, particularly on the big screen.

There’s also a series of events designed to explore the boundaries between cinema and other arts, including installations, exhibitions, spoken word nights and live music events. A previous stand-out event includes Mark Donne’s The Rime of the Modern Mariner, an elegiac ode to Docklands culture performed in the Hawksmoor church St Anne’s with a live orchestral score.

Image: Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts 

A highlight of the festival is the awards, with awards for Best UK Short and Best Film. On the shortlist this year is Some Sweet Oblivious Antidote – a film about a 13-year-old who starts speaking in Shakespearean verse and Emkhatsini, about a woman lost in the Swazi outback.

The festival is open to all and there’s such a varied and interesting range of films on offer. It’s a unique chance to explore art made by up and coming filmmakers or those who exist out of the spotlight. There’s still popcorn though, don’t worry.

The East End Film Festival, see website for full schedule and locations. 

Featured image: Call Me By Your Name