Want to escape our troubled times? Immerse yourself in the emotional, life-enhancing pleasures of the musical.

BFI Player's blockbuster collection celebrates the film musical from the late 1920s to today, exploring the visionary work of the artists who transformed the musical into the most joyful and creative of film genres. Going beyond escapism, our global journey will see how the musical tackled the Depression, confronted racism and how it continues to reflect the contemporary world. But most of all we’ll be having fun.

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La La LandLa La Land

Comedy2016128 minsDirector: Damien Chazelle

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone channel old-school Hollywood glamour in this bright and playful romantic musical from director Damien Chazelle (Whiplash).

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I've Gotta HorseI've Gotta Horse

Musical196592 minsDirector: Kenneth Hume

Great British rock and roller Billy Fury buys himself a racehorse in this colourful musical for all the family.

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Musical2015127 minsDirector: Spike Lee

Spike Lee’s bold and vivacious hip-hop musical restages an ancient Greek battle-of-the-sexes in 21st-century Chicago.

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Bride & PrejudiceBride & Prejudice

Musical2004107 minsDirector: Gurinder Chadha

Gurinder Chadha’s Bollywood retelling of Austen’s classic romance is an all-round joy, adding colour and song to Austen’s evergreen wit.

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Sing StreetSing Street

Drama2016106 minsDirector: John Carney

The third in John Carney’s trilogy of musical films is the utterly charming story a boy who escapes his troubles through fronting a pop band.

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Comedy198892 minsDirector: John Waters

‘Pleasantly plump’ teen Tracey Turnblad (Ricki Lake) dances her way onto Baltimore TV using the opportunity to send up the absurdity of segregation in John Waters’ commercial hit.

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Musical199877 minsDirector: Julian Henriques

Neeta and her crew rise to dancehall fame in North West London's Caribbean community, in the first Black British musical.

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Song of FreedomSong of Freedom

Drama193677 minsDirector: J. Elder Wills

A black London docker becomes a famous opera singer in this stirring musical drama starring Paul Robeson

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Beat GirlBeat Girl

Drama196087 minsDirector: Edmond T. Gréville

A cult classic British film about late-fifties youth-rebellion set against an intoxicating Beatnik backdrop.

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London RoadLondon Road

Musical201592 minsDirector: Rufus Norris

Daring, startling and wholly original: a musical based on the infamous Ipswich murders of 2006, adapted by National Theatre director Rufus Norris.

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The Flame of LoveThe Flame of Love

Melodrama193075 minsDirector: Richard Eichberg and Walter Summers

Chinese-American star Anna May Wong dazzles as a Chinese dancer forced to give herself to a Russian General in order to save her brother.

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Kentucky MinstrelsKentucky Minstrels

Musical193566 minsDirector: John Baxter

Rarely-seen 1930s British musical about two African American travelling minstrels in search of entertainment work.

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The Boy FriendThe Boy Friend

Musical1972136 minsDirector: Ken Russell

A timid actress is forced to cover for the injured star and falls for the leading man, in Ken Russell's thoroughly British variant on the MGM musical.

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Biopic1976103 minsDirector: Ken Russell

Ken Russell's characteristically spectacular biopic of Liszt, with Roger Daltrey portraying the composer as a rock god, is a heady brew complete with garish Freudian symbolism, Hitler, spaceships and Ringo Starr as the Pope.

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Hedwig and the Angry InchHedwig and the Angry Inch

Musical200192 minsDirector: John Cameron Mitchell

The trailblazing cult musical about a transgender punk from East Germany who reinvents herself as a rock diva.

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An American in ParisAn American in Paris

Musical1951113 minsDirector: Vincente Minnelli

Gene Kelly stars as a former GI turned bohemian artist, torn between two women in this exhilarating ride through the Gershwin songbook.

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Meet Me in St. LouisMeet Me in St. Louis

Musical1944113 minsDirector: Vincente Minnelli

Vincente Minnelli’s hymn to family, home and community is a musical miracle with Judy Garland as its beating heart.

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Calamity JaneCalamity Jane

Musical1953101 minsDirector: David Butler

Doris Day shares her secret love in this whip-crackin’ musical western.

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Seven Brides for Seven BrothersSeven Brides for Seven Brothers

Musical1954102 minsDirector: Stanley Donen

Stanley Donen's classic musical western, in which a backwoodsman brings home his new bride, sparking inspiration in his six brothers, who decide they want to get married too.

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Little Shop of HorrorsLittle Shop of Horrors

Comedy198694 minsDirector: Frank Oz

Frank Oz's vivid adaptation of the cult sci-fi musical, with Rick Moranis as a flower-shop assistant battling a 'Mean Green Mother from Outer Space'.

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South Park: Bigger Longer & UncutSouth Park: Bigger Longer & Uncut

Animation & Artists Moving Image199981 minsDirector: Trey Parker

In the outrageous spinoff from the animated series, Cartman and co. inadvertently instigate a war between the US and Canada.

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Mister CindersMister Cinders

Comedy193569 minsDirector: Friedrich Zelnik

Jolly gender-swapped musical version of Cinderella, featuring a play within the film in which the characters star in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.

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First a GirlFirst a Girl

Comedy193692 minsDirector: Victor Saville

Sparkling musical comedy about a shop girl who pretends to be a boy in order to perform on stage as a female impersonator.

Currently unavailable

Expresso BongoExpresso Bongo

Drama1960111 minsDirector: Val Guest

Val Guest's 1959 London-shot Brit Beat classic charts the fortunes of aspiring musician Bert Rudge (Cliff Richard)

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