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Free Cinema (3 Discs) (BFI)

Released on 13 March 2006

Featuring: Michael Andrews, Eduoardo Paolozzi & Valy

Format: DVD | Rating: Exempt from Classification

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    The term 'free cinema' was coined by critic and filmmaker Lindsay Anderson in early 1956 when he, Karel Reisz, Tony Richardson and Lorenza Mazzetti showed a programme of their short films at the National Film Theatre. Although the name was intended only for that screening, it proved so successful that five more programmes were shown under the same banner between 1956 and 1959.

    The films were 'free' in the sense that they were made outside the framework of the film industry, and that their statements were entirely personal. Of the six screenings, three showed short British documentaries, while the other three showed new foreign films.

    'Free Cinema' as it is understood today, however, specifically refers to the films made by Anderson's group, and it is these films which form the basis of this collection. These films had in common not only the conditions of their production (low budget, unpaid crew) and the equipment they employed (hand-held 16mm cameras), but a style and attitude. Mostly funded by the BFI's Experimental Film Fund, they featured ordinary, mostly working-class people at work and play, displaying a rare and sympathy and respect, and a self-consciously poetic style. They also shared an experimental approach to sound, avoiding narration and imaginatively counter pointing sound and image.

    Film List:

    O Dreamland
    Momma Don't Allow
    Wakefield Express
    Nice Time
    The Singing Street
    Every Day Except Christmas
    Refuge England
    We Are The Lambeth Boys
    Food For A Bush
    One Potato, Two Potato
    The Vanishing Street
    Tomorrow's Saturday
    Gala Day
    March to Aldermaston
    • Interviews with Lorenza Mazzetti, Walter Lassally, Alain Tanner and Mike Grigsby
    • Audio interview from the NFT Free Cinema commemorative event in March 2001
    • Stills gallery
    • Fully illustrated booklet

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    ActorsMichael Andrews, Eduoardo Paolozzi, Valy, Denis Richardson, Cecilia May, George Potts, Alun Owen, Tibor Molnar, Abdul Hamid Khan, Leonard Ryland, Bill Collins, Elizabeth Russell, Nicholas Ferguson, Felicity Innes & Brian Innes
    DirectorKarel Reisz, Tony Richardson, Lorenza Mazzetti, Lindsay Anderson, Claude Goretta, Alain Tanner, N. McIsaac, J.T.R. Richie, R. Townsend, Robert Vas, Michael Grigsby & Elizabeth Russell
    CertificateExempt from Classification
    ScreenFullscreen 4:3
    LanguagesEnglish - Dolby Digital (2.0) Stereo
    SubtitlesEnglish for the hearing impaired
    Duration7 hours and 55 minutes (approx)
    RegionRegion 2 - Will only play on European Region 2 or multi-region DVD players.