This month sees Minicine screening not one but two films at Armley Mills’ Palace Picturehouse.
First up we have Bahman Ghobadi’s award winning No One Knows About Persian Cats (2009), screening Thursday, August 23rd from 7PM. The film showcases a group of young musicians striving to practice their art, record music and play live shows in a city where defiance of stringent restrictions placed upon performance and expression is met with viciously perilous consequences. Ash and Negar, of the band Take it Easy Hospital, are determined to acquire the correct papers in order to leave Iran. Their journey to do so brings them into contact with many musicians, practising and playing in inventive spaces across Tehran. With all the musicians in the film playing themselves, the film blurs the lines between fact and fiction. This is amplified in a meta-textual way by the symmetry between the peril these musicians face, and the peril that those making this actual film with no permit or legal permission also face.
The film has won several awards over the years including the Special Jury Prize Ex-aequo in the Un Certain Regard strand of the prestigious Cannes Film Festival in 2009.
If you haven’t been to a Minicine screening at the Mills before, the Palace Picturehouse is a 26-seater cinema styled in 1930’s decor. In addition to our feature presentation we will be screening a brief programme of short films to accompany it as well as hot tea, coffee and homemade cake for you to enjoy while you sit and watch.
No One Knows About Persian Cats will also be preceded by an introduction from Sanaz Raji, a Phd Scholar at the Institute of Communication Studies, University of Leeds. She is currently examining the use of subversive humor online created by second generation diasporic Iranians as part of a larger discourse on the dynamic of being Iranian diasporic in a post-September 11th context and has previously presented her work at the London School of Economics and Political Science, Sussex University, University of Manchester, Oxford University, and the 2012 FutureEverything Conference.
Sanaz’s talk will explore Iran’s diverse pop music tradition from the 1950s-present and she will also be available to answer any questions the audience might have after seeing the film.
Then on Saturday, August 25th, we’re back at Armley Mills to host a very special event with the Industrial Museum. Taking inspiration from the film Hindle Wakes (1927) we will be recreating a Wakes Week holiday inside the museum complex.
Wakes Week was held annually in mill towns, and was the week when the mills entirely shut down and the workers were granted a holiday, in which they would typically visit the great British seaside! Inside the museum will be some resources and activities about the mills themselves, while outside there will be a number of seaside attractions including Punch and Judy, sandpits, a miniature railway and a coconut shy. Then in the early evening the film itself will be screened in the museum’s historic Palace Picturehouse.
Directed by Maurice Elvey, one of the most prolific directors in British history, his first attempt at filming Hindle Wakes was deemed unsuccessful by the director himself, and so in 1927 he re-made the film. The re-make is the superior piece in almost every way; a sensitive, poetic analysis of the human condition and post-victorian British society in general, it manages to avoid merely fulfilling a simplistic social-realist depiction that the content could quite easily facilitate (and that indeed it did in the later versions). It is this version that will be screened at Armley Mills.
And yes, the screening will feature Minicine’s fimiliar accompanying programme of short films, tea, coffee and cake for all you caffeine fiends to get your fix! The screening will start at 6PM and finish around 8PM – the perfect warm up to you bank holiday Saturday night out!
Tickets can be purchased from minicine.bigcartel.com so if you enjoy exceedingly good cinema that you don’t normally find down at the local multiplex, or you just fancy trying something different, head there now and hopefully we’ll see you all on the 23rd and/or 25th.