Heard of BFI Player? Well, there’s also BFI Player+, a subscription service that offers an all-you-can-eat selection of hand-picked classics.
Every Friday, Mark Kermode highlights one of the collection’s titles with a video introduction. This week, it’s Gomorrah. Matteo Garrone’s searing Naples crime drama won the Gran Prix at Cannes and inspired a hit TV series. The 2008 thriller cut through society like a caustic cheese wire back, revealing organised crime at every level of the country with a documentary-like authenticity.
What else is new? Here are the latest titles on BFI Player+ this week:
I Am Belfast
The words “poetic tribute to the city of Belfast” may not appeal to everyone, but there’s certainly poetry to be found in Mark Cousins’ gentle city symphony.
The director’s latest cinematic essay chronicles the changing landscape of the Irish town. Cousins’ narration is out in full force, his mellifluous brogue providing an easy-listening counterpart to visuals that are equally easy on the eye. He mostly hands voice-over duties, though, to Helena Bereen, who voices an old woman who has lived in the city for generations – and, in turn, voices the place itself. Read our full review
Twins of Evil
Still craving Hammer Horror? John Hough’s 1971 sees a pair of innocent twins come under the influence of the evil Count Karnstein. Real-life twins (and former Playboy Playmates) Mary and Madeleine Collinson play the twins, with Peter Cushing inevitably co-starring.
Sean Lock is a criminal ‘Smart Alek’ in this short film based on the apparently true story of a family holiday turned bloody nightmare.
92 in the Shade
Thomas McGuane’s 1975 thriller stars Peter Fonda, Warren Oates and Harry Dean Stanton in a tale of warring Florida fishing gangs. A rare chance to see this in the UK.
Hands of Destiny
The strange prophesies of Dr Josef Ranald, palm reader of choice to Nazi war leaders.
The Valley (Obscured by Clouds)
Barbet Schroeder’s 1972 film, which boasts a score by Pink Floyd, follows a bored diplomat’s wife as she ventures into the rainforest, only to meet a tribe, shed her inhibitions and, ultimately, head to The Valley – but is it the paradise people say it is?
Land and Freedom
Ken Loach’s acclaimed 1995 film marks a rare departure from the director’s traditional British milieu, instead focusing on the Spanish Civil War – but his signature realist style brings a raw quality to the historical drama.
A BFI Player+ subscription costs £4.99 a month with a 30-day free trial. For more information, visit http://player.bfi.org.uk.