7 January

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The Father

UK  2020  97 mins  12A

Yet another five-star Oscar-winning performance from Anthony Hopkins in this screen adaptation of director Florian Zeller’s own award-winning play. Hopkins’ character, Anthony, is a retired engineer who is lapsing into dementia and being told by his daughter Anne (Olivia Colman) to prepare himself for the arrival of a new carer (Imogen Poots) because Anne has a new partner and a chance of happiness at last, and is moving to Paris. In a series of heart-rending scenes, the increasingly bewildered Anthony tries and fails to keep a grasp on reality. As confusion and anger are thrown in Anne’s face, it is we, the audience, who enter Anthony’s disturbed state of mind.

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4 February

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Night of the Kings

Ivory Coast  2020  93 mins  15

Like Scheherazade in the Arabian Nights, pick-pocket Roman (French for ‘novel’) must spin tales as a new arrival in a hot and sweaty Ivory Coast jungle prison that is all but run by the inmates. And, as with Scheherazade, Roman’s life will be forfeited if his stories don’t measure up. This powerfully inventive Oscar-nominated film from French director Philippe Lacôte must work just as compellingly as Roman himself to keep us entertained. But Roman’s is far from being a one-man show as other prisoners – dancers, singers, and martial artists – step up to parade their own talents. Lacôte constantly challenges prison-movie stereotypes in this highly original work. (S)

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18 February

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Annette

USA  2021  141 mins  15

A musical like no other. Lloyd Webber or Sondheim this is not. Although, like many an opera, Annette is mostly sung-through, this one is both highly experimental and gloriously original. Directed by the challenging French film-maker Leos Carax (Holy Motors) and with words and music by Ron and Russell Mael of the band Sparks, Annette stars a compelling Adam Driver as a radical LA stand-up comic desperately in love with opera singer Ann (Marion Cotillard). They marry and produce a child, Annette, whose unreal marionette-like body joints ensure that only they could love her. In short, everything about this crazy, delightful musical will pull you in fresh directions. Don’t miss it!

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25 February

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Shiva Baby – Rescheduled from January

USA  2020  87 mins  15

A delightfully self-aware black comedy in which seemingly aimless Danielle (Rachel Sennott) leads a shocking (to her family, of course) double life as an escort girl. Things kick off when she unexpectedly bumps into her married lover, Max, at a shiva gathering (the Jewish period of mourning following a funeral). Both she and Max (Danny Deferrari) are completely thrown to find they’re members of the same social community, and in the hothouse context of the shiva buffet Danielle must also fend off pushy inquiries about her future and want of a boyfriend. Cue the hurt presence of her own ex-girlfriend in this witty blend of lies and squirming social confusion.

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Borderlines logo

Borderlines Film Festival

FESTIVAL RUNS FROM 4TH TO 20TH MARCH

Each year the Borderlines Film Festival, the largest rural film festival in the UK, centred on Hereford's Courtyard Arts Centre but also spread across numerous venues in Herefordshire, Shropshire and Powys, brings us a vast selection of new and old films. Presteigne Film Society has participated as a venue for many years and Presteigne Screen will feature three movies under the Borderlines umbrella (a bigger commitment to this excellent festival). See also the comprehensive website at www.borderlinesfilmfestival.co.uk.

(When tickets are available the Book Tickets Here link for each participating film below will take you to the official Borderlines Box Office page for that event)

Borderlines advance booking closes 24 hours before the screening


4 March

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The Nest  (Borderlines) £5.50

USA  2021  107 mins  15

House as metaphor (decaying mansion, actually) is superbly deployed in this object lesson in vanity and selfishness. New York commodity trader and ex-Brit Rory (Jude Law) takes out a lease on a vast 17th-century pile in Surrey without consulting his American wife and kids, uprooting them from their contented lives on their side of the Atlantic. Rory’s move is at one with his insensitivity generally, including his refusal to share with wife Allison (Carrie Coon) the money problems that quickly close in. Director and screen writer Sean Durkin has crafted a moody triumph that, unlike Rory, is fully alive to the emotional edifice that is crumbling around them.

Book Tickets Here

Click here for Film of the Week review

11 March

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Souad  (Borderlines) £5.50

Egypt  2021  96 mins  12A

Are we what we project on social media, or is it all an illusion? Or a mix? And how much does it matter? Souad (Bassant Ahmed) is a naïve 19-year-old small-town Egyptian girl who cheerfully spreads both truth and lies, usually on her phone, spinning fantasies to impress strangers, and claiming a boyfriend in Alexandria, Ahmed (Hussein Ghanem), whom she has never actually met. She calls him, she sexts him, she believes she is conducting a credible relationship, while bouncing her dreams off her more realistic younger sister Rabab (Basmala Elghaiesh) who is more the modest young Muslim that Souad is expected to be. But the fantasies cannot last... (S)

Book Tickets Here

Click here for Souad review in Sight & Sound

18 March

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Azor  (Borderlines) £5.50

Argentina  2021  100 mins  12A

A chilling thriller, set in Argentina in 1980, a time when the military junta hunted down and tortured leftist and liberal dissidents, and when the term ‘the disappeared’ sounded as frightening as it was bland. Yvan (Fabrizio Rongione) is a discreet, urbane Swiss banker who is visiting his anxious Argentine-based super-wealthy clients, taking along his equally elegant wife Inès (Stéphanie Cléau) as a cover to suggest touristy normality. One client’s daughter has disappeared, and so has one of Yvan’s own colleagues. As danger mounts, his entanglement is matched by his determined calmness and strict adherence to the Swiss banking code for ‘keep quiet’ – ‘Azor’. (S)

Book Tickets Here

Click here for Guardian review

1 April

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Martin Eden

Italy  2019  129 mins  15

In the mid-20th century, working-class sailor Martin (Luca Marinelli) is swept into the world of the Italian aristocracy when he rescues a grateful young upper-class guy. Dazzled by this new world, and falling instantly in love with haute bourgeois Elena (Jessica Cressy), Martin plans to improve his lot in life as he pursues her. His route out of poverty? Become a successful writer. Undeterred by early failure, Martin eventually finds his authentic voice when he meets left-wing journalist Russ Brissenden (Carlo Cecchi), after which Elena’s world loses its appeal. Martin Eden, based on a Jack London novel is, claims Sight & Sound, ‘one of the best films of the past decade’. (S)

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22 April

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Another Round

Denmark  2020  117 mins  12A

If you’re feeling a couple of drinks under par these days, then this one’s for you. In Thomas (Festen, The Hunt) Vinterberg’s latest, four middle-aged teachers, led by Danish heart-throb Mads Mikkelsen, decide to fight against the boredom claiming their lives, and embrace the daily pick-me-up that is alcohol. Not recklessly, of course. They’re seduced by a psychiatrist’s claim that a carefully measured intake will improve your lot so long as it’s scientifically controlled. And initially the experiment works. Once again school classes become a joy, both for our heroes and their pupils. And home life revives as well. So, if a little booze makes sense, won’t more make even more sense…? (S)

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Winter-Spring 2022

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