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Bristol Radical Film Festival 2018

Starts 11:00 AM to 10:00 PM
Ticket price
Individual screenings: £6/4 Full Festival Pass: £20/15 // 3 Event Pass: £15/£10
Age limit
all ages
More Info

Bristol Radical Film Festival 2018

Celebrating political, activist and experimental filmmaking

Radical Shorts | Films start 11am (international directors, 2018, ~90mins)

The festival kicks off with our annual shorts competition programme, showcasing the best of the submissions to our annual callout. From radical filmmakers all over the world, these contemporary short films have been selected to showcase the extraordinary range and creativity deployed by filmmakers seeking to engage the myriad environmental, social and political issues in the 21st century.

Free sheets will be provided at the start of the session with details of the shorts screened.

Pressure | Film starts 1.30pm (Horace Ové, 1976, 132mins) + Q&A by activist Barbara Beese

“...the last great (and perhaps most under-appreciated) film of the British New Wave.” - The Telegraph

Tony, a young British man whose family immigrated from Trinidad, reckons with the British black power movement. Through interaction with his brothers’ political activity and backlash at his friendship with white peers, he comes to a powerful political realisation.

A key black British film by Windrush generation director Horace Ové, Pressure was shelved for almost three years by its funders, the BFI, ostensibly because it contained scenes showing police brutality. It’s the first British feature to be directed by a black filmmaker, an accolade for which Ové holds a Guinness World Record.

Burkinabè Rising: The Art of Resistance in Burkina Faso | Film starts 4.55pm (Iara Lee, 2017, 72mins)

“Change happens through music, art, agriculture, architecture, language..." - Iara Lee

On 15 October 1987, Burkina Faso’s President Thomas Sankara was assassinated in a coup d’etat led by his best friend and supposed ally Blaise Campaoré - who went on to rig elections to stay in power for 27 years. In 2014 the people revolted, and the ‘Burkinabè Uprising’ forced Campaoré into exile.

This beautifully filmed and intensely political documentary showcases the contemporary reality of creative nonviolent resistance in Burkina Faso, home to a vibrant community of artists and engaged citizens, who prove that political change can be achieved when people come together.

The Big Flame | Film starts 7pm (Ken Loach, 1969, 85mins) + panel discussion

“...a blueprint for the communist takeover of the docks.” - Mary Whitehouse

Thanks for the publicity, Mary! One of Loach’s lesser known TV plays from the BBC’s Play for Today strand, this is nevertheless one of the most fiery, and controversial according to writer Jim Allen. Filmed in Loach’s trademark docu-drama style, The Big Flame follows 10,000 Liverpudlian dock workers as they stage a “work-in” - that is, they turn up to work one day to take over their workplace.

At the time, rising unemployment was putting increasing pressure on British workers, and the government had just announced a ban on ‘unofficial strikes’. This ‘unofficial’ revolutionary action was considered so radical that, alongside its follow up, Rank and File (1971), Loach and Allen were accused by some of being ‘stooges’, for going against trade union as well as capitalist bosses.

BRFF 2018 Afterparty (10pm-late/early)
“If I can’t dance, it’s not my revolution.” - Emma Goldman (probably)

JoinRadical Film Festival at the nearest pub for the evening, continue the conversation and meet fellow radical filmmakers and filmgoers from Bristol. Til late, no fighting.

About Radical Film Festival

The Bristol Radical Film Festival returns this October for its 7th year celebrating political, activist and experimental filmmaking. This year’s programme combines urgent contemporary political subjects with an eclectic mix of archive gems, basking in reflection on the 50th anniversary of the progressive political upheavals of 1968. As ever we’re showcasing the winners of our international short film competition, and rather than continuing our nomadic tradition, this year we return to 2017’s excellent hosts at the Trinity Arts Centre. Together we continue build awareness for our programme of radical and progressive film for an increasingly inclusive audience.

This year’s selection of radical cinema includes the first British feature made by a black director (Pressure, Saturday), for which filmmaker Horace Ové holds a Guinness World Record; one of Ken Loach’s first works, a story of worker revolt so radical even some leftists were up in arms about it (The Big Flame, Saturday); and a docu-fiction exploring the current refugee crisis that Michael Sicinski called “one of the most conceptually rigorous documentaries I've seen” (Stranger in Paradise, Sunday).

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