The Glasgow Film Festival (GFF) launched their programme last night. And seriously, what a programme! There are over 310 performances to choose from at this year’s event – now one of the largest film festival’s in the UK. It is a festival that attracts massive audience numbers, which is probably a direct response to the fact that the organisers clearly love their audience and programme innovatively, yet without pretension.
The eclectic programme is divided into 17 strands – there’s everything from Dangerous Dames dedicated to Hollywood’s most badass film noir females and Pioneer showcasing first and second features from directors who display distinct talent and vision; to returning and ever popular strands, such as the Stranger Than Fiction (documentaries) and FrightFest (horror).
But for Audience Adventures, there is one major strand worth checking out – Special Events. These one-of-a-kind screenings offer an immersive experience for film-goers, with many taking place in pop-up cinemas within well-loved city venues.
Here’s my top five pick of this year’s GFF:
The Princess Bride at Maryburgh Halls (Feb 25)
Enter an enchanted forest for a treasure hunt, fencing performances and a chance to rediscover this swashbuckling, hilarious adventure that is magical for children and adults alike.
The Thing at Snow Factor (Feb 23)
John Carpenter and Kurt Russell = always a winning combo! Dress warm and trust no one for this ski slope screening of an 80s horror classic, which sees a crew of researchers in the Antarctica picked off one-by-one in chilling circumstances and settings. Ice bar anyone?
Move at the Joytown Grand Electric Theatre (Feb 18)
A pop-up audio-visual experience which aims to transport its audience through time and space to celebrate Europe. Rarely seen archive film will be brought to life by musicians and dancers, with a party to follow in one of Glasgow’s most exciting new venues.
Raving Iran presented by Sub Hub at Barras Art and Design (Feb 19)
Raving Iran follows two young men who continually risk their freedom in order to share banned Western music in their home of Tehran, culminating in one epic blow-out. The screening will be accompanied by Iranian street food, with more activities to be announced soon.
Secretary at SWG3
This 15th anniversary screening of Secretary – a sweet romance between a dominant lawyer and submissive secretary – will be followed by a party featuring Torture Garden performers and a specially curated playlist. Dress up encouraged!
Other Special Event films on the line-up are: The Big Easy, Dirty Dancing, Surprise Film and The Wee Govan Pipers. There are also two sold out screenings in this strand, which went on sale at an earlier date, Lost Boys (sold out) and Lost in France (sold out) – both of which would have been in my top five if there had been tickets available. For more information visit glasgowfilm.org.