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British Classics

Tales of war and want, nerve and desire, flavoured with wit and rhythm from some of the greatest filmmakers ever assembled.

Comic books and potboilers, literature and memoir populate these stories from a nation whose land and language accommodates tellers from the world.

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British Classics
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View Billy Liar
Billy Liar
HD

Billy Liar 1963 PG

Tom Courtenay is the clerk whose overactive fantasies compensate for a dull provincial life, in this classic film from the British New Wave.

98 mins United Kingdom Director. John Schlesinger

View Black Narcissus
Black Narcissus

Black Narcissus 1947 U

Tensions grow when a group of nuns open a convent in the Himalayas in Powell and Pressburger's remarkable melodrama, starring Deborah Kerr.

100 mins United Kingdom Director. Emeric Pressburger, Michael Powell

View Brief Encounter
Brief Encounter
HD

Brief Encounter 1945 PG

Noël Coward’s tale of a love affair, thrillingly played out with tight British reserve.

86 mins United Kingdom Director. David Lean

View Burning an Illusion
Burning an Illusion
HD

Burning an Illusion 1981 15

Menelik Shabazz’s pioneering first feature traces the emotional and political growth of a young black couple in Thatcher’s London.

101 mins United Kingdom Director. Menelik Shabazz

View Blithe Spirit
Blithe Spirit

Blithe Spirit 1945 U

A séance results in a man’s first wife returning from the dead in Noël Coward’s wonderful comedy.

96 mins United Kingdom Director. David Lean

View A Canterbury Tale
A Canterbury Tale
HD

A Canterbury Tale 1944 U

Powell and Pressburger's most personal film combines a Chaucer-inspired pilgrimage with a war-time celebration of English landscape and values to create a gem of British cinema.

124 mins United Kingdom Director. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger

View Distant Voices Still Lives
Distant Voices Still Lives

Distant Voices Still Lives 1988 15

Terence Davies' debut feature is a remarkable evocation of working-class family life in the 40s and 50s and a visionary exploration of memory.

85 mins United Kingdom Director. Terence Davies

View The Draughtsman's Contract
The Draughtsman's Contract

The Draughtsman's Contract 1982 15

Peter Greenaway became a director of international status with this witty, stylised, erotic country house murder mystery.

118 mins United Kingdom Director. Peter Greenaway

View The Elephant Man
The Elephant Man
HD

The Elephant Man 1980 PG

John Hurt stars David Lynch's exceptionally moving true-life tale of the severely deformed Joseph Merrick and his rescue from the hell of a Victorian circus sideshow.

124 mins USA Director. David Lynch

View The Four Feathers
The Four Feathers

The Four Feathers 1939 U

Ambitiously mounted and shot in Technicolor, this is by far the best screen adaptation of the popular adventure story set during the Anglo-Sudan War.

130 mins United Kingdom Director. Zoltan Korda

View Genevieve
Genevieve

Genevieve 1953 U

Classic British comedy about two vintage automobile enthusiasts racing from Brighton to London.

110 mins United Kingdom Director. Henry Cornelius

View Great Expectations
Great Expectations
HD

Great Expectations 1946 PG

The first of David Lean’s two Dickens adaptations is one of the finest British literary interpretations and one of the most acclaimed of all British films.

118 mins United Kingdom

View Green for Danger
Green for Danger

Green for Danger 1946 PG

A series of murders at a wartime hospital are probed by an eccentric policeman.

91 mins United Kingdom Director. Sidney Gilliat

View Hell Is a City
Hell Is a City
HD

Hell Is a City 1959 PG

Stanley Baker stars as a DI trailing an escaped convict through the streets of Manchester in this punchy crime thriller with a strong realist streak.

93 mins United Kingdom Director. Val Guest

View Henry V
Henry V

Henry V 1944 U

Laurence Olivier rouses an all-star cast and an imperiled nation with his magnificent adaptation of Shakespeare's warrior monarch.

137 mins United Kingdom Director. Laurence Olivier

View Ill Met by Moonlight
Ill Met by Moonlight

Ill Met by Moonlight 1957 U

Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s film of the daring WII raid to capture a German commander, with Dirk Bogarde and Marius Goring.

104 mins United Kingdom

View The Ipcress File
The Ipcress File

The Ipcress File 1965 PG

The coolest spy of all – Michael Caine’s Harry Palmer – makes his brilliant big screen debut in this landmark British spy thriller.

109 mins United Kingdom Director. Sidney J. Furie

View The Lady Vanishes
The Lady Vanishes

The Lady Vanishes 1938 U

An old woman disappears mysteriously on a busy train in Hitchcock’s delightful classic.

97 mins United Kingdom Director. Alfred Hitchcock

View The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp
The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp
HD

The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp 1943 U

Powell and Pressburger’s masterpiece follows the rise and fall of a career soldier, from dashing and brave young officer in the Boer War to a pompous and old-fashioned Colonel by the time of World War Two.

163 mins United Kingdom Director. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger

View A Matter of Life and Death
A Matter of Life and Death

A Matter of Life and Death 1946 U

Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s timeless romantic fantasy, with David Niven as an airman trapped between life and death.

104 mins United Kingdom Director. Emeric Pressburger, Michael Powell

View My Ain Folk
My Ain Folk

My Ain Folk 1973 PG

The second part of the revered Bill Douglas Trilogy follows Jamie as he ends up in a children’s home.

55 mins United Kingdom Director. Bill Douglas

View My Childhood
My Childhood

My Childhood 1972 PG

The first part of Bill Douglas’ poetic and profoundly stirring autobiographical trilogy, about an eight-year-old boy growing up in a Scottish mining village in 1945.

46 mins United Kingdom Director. Bill Douglas

View My Way Home
My Way Home

My Way Home 1978 15

Concluding his acclaimed Trilogy, Bill Douglas’ autobiographical film follows young Jamie as he’s conscripted in the RAF and finally feels at home.

United Kingdom

View A Night to Remember
A Night to Remember

A Night to Remember 1958 PG

Widely regarded as the finest film account of the sinking of the Titanic, this moving seafaring disaster tale will grip you from start to finish.

123 mins United Kingdom Director. Roy Ward Baker

View Odd Man Out
Odd Man Out

Odd Man Out 1947 PG

A gunman, badly wounded during a robbery, attempts to escape from the authorities in Belfast, in Carol Reed's moody Belfast set-thriller with James Mason.

116 mins United Kingdom Director. Carol Reed

View Oliver Twist
Oliver Twist
HD

Oliver Twist 1948 U

Arguably the essential Dickens adaptation, David Lean’s evocative portrayal of Victorian London in sooty black and white features Alec Guinness as a memorably sinister Fagin.

115 mins United Kingdom Director. David Lean

View Peeping Tom
Peeping Tom
HD

Peeping Tom 1960 15

Michael Powell’s dark, disturbing, once controversial tale of a shy camera technician who films women as he kills them is now rightly deemed a classic

101 mins United Kingdom Director. Michael Powell

View The Red Shoes
The Red Shoes

The Red Shoes 1948 U

Moira Shearer’s ballerina is torn between love and her career in Powell and Pressburger’s hugely influential melodrama.

133 mins United Kingdom Director. Emeric Pressburger, Michael Powell

View Seance on a Wet Afternoon
Seance on a Wet Afternoon

Seance on a Wet Afternoon 1964 PG

Bryan Forbes’ stylish psychological thriller about a medium who plans to kidnap a child and help the police solve the crime to bolster her reputation as a clairvoyant.

Great Britain Director. Bryan Forbes

View That Hamilton Woman
That Hamilton Woman

That Hamilton Woman 1941 PG

Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier bring Hollywood glitz to the love affair between Lord Nelson and Emma Hamilton in the midst of political turmoil.

128 mins USA Director. Alexander Korda

View Things to Come
Things to Come
HD

Things to Come 1936 PG

H.G. Wells' chilling vision of the future, which imagines the 20th Century as a near-endless war and struggle against tyranny, remains a key milestone in British science fiction.

108 mins United Kingdom Director. William Cameron Menzies

View The 39 Steps
The 39 Steps

The 39 Steps 1935 U

Sublime and suspenseful version of the popular John Buchan spy thriller from the master of suspense himself, Alfred Hitchcock.

86 mins United Kingdom Director. Alfred Hitchcock

View This Sporting Life
This Sporting Life

This Sporting Life 1963 12

Lindsay Anderson’s fantastic first feature masterfully dissects the brutal life struggles of a rough-edged rugby footballer on and off the field.

134 mins United Kingdom Director. Lindsay Anderson

View Tiger Bay
Tiger Bay

Tiger Bay 1959 PG

A young girl witnesses a murder, befriending the killer and shielding him from the police.

104 mins United Kingdom Director. J. Lee Thompson

View Victim
Victim
HD

Victim 1961 PG

This thought-provoking classic stars Dirk Bogarde as a homosexual lawyer who risks his career to hunt down a blackmailer.

100 mins United Kingdom Director. Basil Dearden

View The Way Ahead
The Way Ahead

The Way Ahead 1944 U

A stirring wartime drama about seven ordinary men who become a formidable fighting force.

91 mins United Kingdom Director. Carol Reed

View Whisky Galore!
Whisky Galore!
HD

Whisky Galore! 1949 U

Ealing's thirstiest comedy: "the longest unsponsored advertisement ever to reach cinema screens"?

82 mins United Kingdom Director. Alexander Mackendrick

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