The first MK3D of 2024 was the 87th edition of the show at the BFI Southbank, hosted by Mark Kermode and we kicked off the show with the Here’s the Thing segment, to talk about some Awards Season news.
Mark talked about the only two Awards ceremonies that are of any importance: The Critics Circle Film Awards which happen on 4 February at the May Fair Hotel, which Mark is presenting. And the Girls On Film Awards which take place on 20 February at Regent Street Cinema – which this year, are open to the public. Seats go on sale on 27 January. Mark also flagged up two Girls On Film screenings, free to subscribers of their newsletter: they are MAESTRO on 23 January followed by a Q&A with Carey Mulligan, and KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON on 28 January followed by a Q&A with Golden Globe winner Lily Gladstone. A few tickets are still available: email firstname.lastname@example.org to apply for tickets.
Mark’s first guests on the show were Jane Giles and Ali Catterall to talk about their documentary SCALA!!! OR THE INCREDIBLY STRANGE RISE AND FALL OF THE WORLD’S WILDEST CINEMA AND HOW IT INFLUENCED A MIXED-UP GENERATION OF WEIRDOS AND MISFITS. The release of the film is accompanied by a BFI Season entitled SEX, DRUGS & ROCK ‘N’ ROLL CINEMA, which includes films like THUNDERCRACK, CLOCKWORK ORANGE and FASTER PUSSYCAT KILL! KILL!
Mark also showed a “very Scala” mash-up of DOUGAL AND THE BLUE CAT and THE WICKER MAN – entitled DOUGAL AND THE WICKER MAN, which was Ali Caterall’s first film.
Next up Mark talked about THE END WE START FROM which releases this coming Friday, and invited director Mahalia Belo and screenwriter Alice Birch onto the stage. You will know Alice for her writing of LADY MACBETH, NORMAL PEOPLE, THE WONDER and DEAD RINGERS. Mahalia Belo won a TV BAFTA Breakthrough Talent Award in 2017 for ELLEN and a BAFTA nomination for THE LONG SONG. Alice and Mahalia talked about their collaboration on THE END WE START FROM, about working with its star Jodie Comer, and about working with babies on set.
Mark asked them to talk about the films that had influenced them. Alice Birch chose John Cassavetes’ A WOMAN UNDER THE INFLUENCE, which changed the way she writes. She talked about the ‘spaghetti scene’ which features a large group of people sitting around the table, and Gena Rowland’s extraordinary performance in it opposite Peter Falk as her husband. Mahalia Belo chose Lynne Ramsay’s RATCATCHER, which was the first film she saw that was directed by a woman, and inspired her to become a director herself.
Next Mark moved to the ASK THE AUDIENCE segment and the questions involved gems like: what film would you make your worst enemy watch?
Mark moved on to POOR THINGS, Yorgos’ Lanthimos feature starring Emma Stone, easily the most talked about film this year, which is out in cinemas now. We were thrilled to welcome composer Jerskin Fendrix whose fantastic score is an integral part of the emotional immediacy and success of the film. Jerskin has a cameo in the dance scene in POOR THINGS, playing a fictional musical instrument. He talked about his experiences of writing the score during lockdown and his close collaboration with Yorgos. The latter told Mark recently that he thinks of Fendrix as ‘his musical muse’.
Finally Mark welcomed Andrew Haigh, director of ALL OF US STRANGERS, and its star Claire Foy. Nominated for a ton of BIFAs, ALL OF US STRANGERS won several, including Best British Independent film, Best Director and Best Screenplay.
Andrew Haigh is known for his films WEEKEND, 45 YEARS and LEAN ON PETE and Claire Foy is best known for playing the Queen in the first season of THE CROWN, and for WOMEN TALKING, WOLF HALL and A VERY BRITISH SCANDAL.
Mark talked to both guests about the narrative of the film, and getting the tonal balance just right, in the interaction between Claire Foy as the mother and Andrew Scott as her son.
Mark asked Claire to reveal a performance that had influenced her and she talked eloquently about Marion Cotillard, who won an Oscar for playing Edith Piaf in LA VIE EN ROSE – and the spine-tingling way in which she conveyed shock in one of the pivotal scenes. Andrew talked about The Film That Changed His Life, DON’T LOOK NOW, which had a seminal influence on his work as a director.
We finished the show with a SOUND & VISION segment, paying tribute once more to Marion Cotillard in LA VIE EN ROSE and her searing rendition of the song Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien.
With thanks to Charlotte Matheson for her help in pulling together the guests and assisting on the night, and to Julie Edwards Photography for stunning photos. Also to the BFI team Sophie Kendrick, Hannah Greenwood, Josh Glenn and Stuart Brown.