Northwest Film Event Highlights – June 2014

John Carpenter is all over the Northwest this month, with screenings at The Dancehouse and FACT. There's also a world premiere in a city centre office block and a classic comedy screening in the open air

Preview by Simon Bland | 02 Jun 2014
  • Escape from New York

Sick of all those blockbustin' monsters, mutants and superheroes smashing up multiplexes? Well we’ve got a few hidden gems worth hearing about that are sure to provide a nice slice of variety to your cinema summer. First on our radar is a world premier with a twist, as Manchester’s 55 Portland Street is transformed into a pop-up cinema to host director Steve Reeves’ indie thriller Keeping Rosy (world premiere 6 Jun; for further screenings see keepingrosy.com). Starring Maxine Peake and Inbetweeners' Blake Harrison, this tense psychological drama transports viewers into the shoes of Charlotte (Peake), a London career girl whose high-pressure life starts to disintegrate after she meets a violent security guard (Harrison). With the majority of the film’s action taking place in a high-rise office block, this immersive screening could be a case of life imitating art.

Meanwhile, Manchester's Dancehouse Theatre continues its John Carpenter season with a couple of Kurt Russell-fronted classics. Dystopian actioner Escape from New York kicks things off on 5 Jun, with one-eyed badass Snake Plissken tasked with rescuing the president from a criminally overrun Manhattan. Then, on 26 Jun, Russell loses the eyepatch for a welcome rerun of Big Trouble in Little China, the irresistibly campy and unintentionally hilarious kung fu romp adored by cheap-cinema fanatics everywhere.

Over in Liverpool, FACT nears the final stretch of its Science Fiction: New Death season, a project designed to inspect our increasingly reliant relationship with technology. Are we living in a science fiction world? To ponder this thought, the cinema hosted a series of classic sci-fi movies, three of which you can catch this month. The 25th anniversary edition of classic manga Akira arrives on 2 Jun, followed by more Carpenter on 9 Jun with the paranoia-fuelled They Live. However, it’s James Cameron’s bulletproof sequel Aliens that visitors selected to end proceedings on 16 Jun. Game over, man.

Just can’t resist the summer sun? Well we’ve got that covered too, thanks to a special screening hosted by yours truly. On 5 Jun, The Skinny present a special showing of Billy Wilder’s drag comedy Some Like It Hot as part of Screenfields 2014. Join us on The Lawns for a cold one as Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis battle it out for the attention of Miss Monroe all for our viewing pleasure. Who said sunshine and cinephiles don’t get on?