At Belmont Filmhouse we love to be able to contribute as far our local community. A big part of this work is our schools outreach programmes. These show films both fun and educational, for primary and secondary schools, as well as other groups across the city.  

Through the pandemic it was difficult to keep this work going in the traditional way – schools had to contend with far reaching restrictions in the same way that cinemas did and many paused trips and activities. Even when restrictions were lifted, we found that demand was slightly wanting.  

As such it has been a joy to see them restart in recent months, with plenty bookings coming through. In June and July end of year leisure weeks allow us to put on films that are more at the ‘fun’ end of the spectrum – Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Pride, The Bad Guys and The Secrets of Dumbledore this year. After a long two years I’m sure they’ll feel well deserved for both kids and teachers alike. We can’t wait to see enthusiastic faces again, both young and old, familiar, and fresh. 

Alongside the schools shows we’ve got a great intake of new films through this period, with Baz Luhrmann’s big Elvis biopic, with Austin Butler and Tom Hanks, and Good Luck To You, Leo Grande, starring Emma Thompson, at the head of the class.  

Also keep an eye out for Il Buco, Michael Frammertino’s latest film about the Bifurto Abyss. His film Le Quattro Volte, about mountain goats and Pythagorean philosophy, was one of my favourites of the Century so far. Expect something just as involving.  

Swan Song, featuring a very against type turn from oft-evil scientist Udo Kier looks like an absolute riot. Jennifer Coolidge cameos in it too. Maltese film Luzzu features a father who turns to the world of black market fishing in order to support his family – the darker side of an industry we know well ourselves. 

Top Gun: Maverick blasts in a few weeks behind release. There’s remasters of Bresson’s French classic Pickpocket and Wim Wenders’ classic Wings of Desire. Princess Diana documentary The Princess puts together media footage of England’s Rose for a different perspective on her relationship with the press. Queer Film Club this month is The Handmaiden. Filmhouse Junior features Free Willy, Annie and The Bad Guys
Lastly we’ve two documentaries on the Windrush generation – Rebel Dread and The Stuart Hall Project, curated by the Black Film Collective and BFI. We’ll follow up Reel Roots: Windrush with Reel Roots: Black History Month in September and October. Film has always been at the centre of cultural movements. It’s so important to represent other voices, both in the past and present.