The Missouri Southern Institute of International Studies and the Harrison and June Kash International Film Society present the following distinguished repertoire of British films.
The series provides a rare opportunity to enjoy the best work of creative directors and performers from Great Britain. Many of the films are being shown at Missouri Southern for the first time and have received great critical recognition and superb reaction from contemporary audiences.
In an effort to enhance viewers’ appreciation, detailed program notes are distributed before each showing.
Admission free for all films and open to the public
A Hard Day’s Night
7 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. Richard Lester, 1964, 85 min.)
Celebrate Missouri Southern’s “British Invasion” by revisiting the Beatles’ debut feature film! The movie, following a fictionalized “day in the life” of the rock band, surprised many by turning out to be both witty and stylish, thanks to the Beatles’ engaging personalities and the talents of the American director, Richard Lester, who used all sorts of innovative film techniques to capture the excitement, exhilaration – and exhaustion! – of Beatlemania.
Sense and Sensibility
7 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. Ang Lee, 1995, 135 min.)
Will the Dashwood sisters, Elinor and Marianne, survive a sudden loss of fortune and find happiness and husbands? Find out in this engaging film, perhaps the most satisfying of all the film adaptations of Jane Austen’s novels. Director Ang Lee’s gorgeous presentation features a stunning cast – Hugh Grant, Kate Winslet, Emma Thompson and the late Alan Rickman, among many others – and an Academy Award-winning screenplay by Thompson herself.
Hope and Glory
7 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. John Boorman, 1987, 113 min.)
In this rarely seen but very fine autobiographical film, director John Boorman recalls the early days of World War II in Britain, as seen through the eyes of a young boy. Critic Leonard Maltin noted that the film is “funny, moving and richly detailed; no one has captured the experience of living through the London air raids and bombings as well” as Boorman has.
7 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. David Lean, 1945, 85 min.)
As Britain is emerging from World War II, two strangers, both married, meet on a train and soon find themselves in a deep but impossible romance. The film stars Celia Johnson, Trevor Howard and Stanley Holloway and was one of the first great films directed by David Lean, who went on to direct such epics as Lawrence of Arabia and Doctor Zhivago. Here Lean works in a much more subdued key, filming Noel Coward’s screenplay with quiet sensitivity, memorably underscored by the sweeping sounds of Rachmaninoff’s 2nd Piano Concerto.
Odd Man Out
7 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. Carol Reed, 1947, 116 min.)
James Mason stars as a revolutionary ex-convict in Belfast who attempts a robbery that goes wrong. Injured and hunted by the police, he desperately seeks refuge in the city, as the woman he loves searches for him. Carol Reed (who would go on to direct The Third Man) directed this noir thriller, according to Criterion, a “fierce, spiritual depiction of a man’s ultimate confrontation with himself.”
7 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. Alexander Mackendrick, 1955, 90 min.)
In this classic comedy from Ealing Studios, directed by Alexander Mackendrick, a gang of dangerous bank robbers disguise themselves as a string quintet so that they can “practice” in the upstairs room they rent from an elderly widow. Featuring Alec Guinness in one of his most outrageous roles as Professor Marcus, and Peter Sellers in his first major screen role.
7 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. John Schlesinger, 1963, 98 min.)
Tom Courtenay, who had made an impact in one of Britain’s best known “angry young man” films, The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (1962), shifts deftly to comedy in this portrayal of a hapless, working-class young man from the Midlands who, much like Walter Mitty, can’t stop fantasizing, as he is torn between two fiancées (one played by Julie Christie) and the demands of his job at an undertaker’s firm. Directed by John Schlesinger.
7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. Kenneth Branagh, 1989, 137 min.)
No British film series would be complete without one of the many great film adaptations of Shakespeare, and this production of Henry V by a very young Kenneth Branagh remains one of the most stunning. Partly in response to Laurence Olivier’s classic version of the 1940s, Branagh plays down the more overtly patriotic dimensions of the play to focus on how war affects humans of all classes as he brings to life Shakespeare’s “warriors for the working day.” Featuring an outstanding cast, impressive cinematography and a powerful musical score by Patrick Doyle.
The 39 Steps
7 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. Alfred Hitchcock, 1935, 86 min.)
What was Alfred Hitchcock doing before he left England to make films like Notorious, Vertigo, and Psycho in the United States? Experience the “British Hitchcock” in this suspenseful spy story about a man who stumbles into a conspiracy that involves him in both a thrilling chase across Scotland and a romance, in a way that anticipates Hitchcock’s later North by Northwest.
Secrets and Lies
7 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. Mike Leigh, 1996, 136 min.)
Known for his honest, unflinching yet sensitive social realism, director Mike Leigh unfolds the story of Hortense, a young, black optometrist whose adoptive parents have recently died and who befriends Cynthia, a depressed, unmarried mother who works in a factory. A web of relationships is revealed as Cynthia’s daughter, her brother and his wife encounter each other in a family reunion that upsets “secrets and lies” with painful truths. Named “Best Film” at the Cannes Film Festival and nominated for five Academy Awards.
Bend It Like Beckham
7 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016 - Cornell Auditorium in Plaster Hall (dir. Gurinda Chadha, 2002, 112 min.)
Our final film in the series takes us into England’s thriving East Asian community as it tells the story of a teenage Anglo-Indian girl who will do just about anything, including “bending” her community’s gender and social norms, to play soccer, like her hero, Beckham. The film features a great ensemble cast of amusing, engaging characters, as it focuses on vital communities in London today. Directed by Gurinda Chadha.