The British Film Festival is on its sixth outing in Kathmandu from 15-19 January at Gopi Krishna cinema. The festival, organised by the British Council, showcases a diverse selection of contemporary British cinema. All films start at 6.30 PM, and tickets are available free of cost and in advance from the reception at the British Council, Lainchaur. Any remaining tickets will be available the day of the film, from 6.10 PM at the theatre. The festival will travel to Pokhara where The Mistress of Spices, Nanny McPhee and Hotel Rwanda will be screened at Shree Krishna cinema hall from 26-28 January. The festival is supported and sponsored by the British Embassy Kathmandu, Gopi Krishna, Standard Chartered Bank, Water Communication, and Radisson Hotel.
15 January. This film is the true story of one man's brave stance against savagery during the 1994 Rwandan conflict. As his country descends into madness, five-star hotel manager Paul Rusesabagina (Cheadle) sets out to save his family. But when he sees the world will not intervene in the massacre of minority Tutsis, he finds the courage to open his hotel to 1,200 refugees. With a rabidly violent militia at the gates, he has only his wits and words to help keep them alive for another hour, another day. Co-starring Spohie Okanedo, Nick Nolte and Joaquin Phoenix, Hotel Rwanda is 'the kind of film that can change the world'.
The Mistress of Spices,
Dir:Paul Mayeda Berges,
16 January. Tilo (Aishwarya Rai), an outsider from India, runs a spice store in San Francisco. She has the gift to see into her customers' lives and desires, and give them spices to help them get what they want. But for the magic to work, Tilo must obey certain rules-never leave the store, never touch another human, love only the spices. When a handsome American (Dylan McDermott) with a secret past enters her store, Tilo's own desires are stirred. The more she falls in love and begins to defy the rules, the worse the lives of her customers become. Will Tilo choose forbidden love over her traditions?
Dir: Kirk Jones,
17 January. In this wickedly charming tale, Emma Thompson portrays a mysterious woman with special powers who enters the household of the recently widowed Mr Brown (Colin Firth) and attempts to tame his seven very naughty children. The children have managed to drive away 17 previous nannies but, as Nanny McPhee takes control, they begin to notice that their misbehaving has magical and startling consequences.
Dir: Mike Leigh,
18 January. Vera Drake (Imelda Staunton) features a working class heroine who harbours a deep personal secret, and explores the dramatic fallout after that secret is revealed. Mike Leigh painstakingly recreates postwar London and its atmosphere of austerity, and highlights its social divisions, double standards, and the moral controversies connected with Vera's charitable pursuit. But it is a pursuit that undoes her and makes of her a victim or, some would say, a martyr.
Dir: Christian Carion,
19 January. It's Christmas 1914. When a conscripted opera singer in the German army (Benno Furmann) displays his vocal skills during a Yuletide visit from his soprano girl friend (Diane Kruger), his rendition of Silent Night is soon accompanied by the pipes of a Scottish padre (Gary Lewis) and his regiment occupying the opposing trenches with their French allies. A brief truce is agreed on by officers of both sides, who discover they have unexpected connections. Officers and soldiers both discover a surprisingly strong kinship with their fellow combatants. This wonderful European film is a sobering tribute to the spirit of humanitarianism in dark days of conflict.