This film is currently unavailable
Billy the Kid and the Green Baize Vampire
Alan Clarke’s once derided feature is surely the only vampire snooker musical in cinema history and a genuine cult artefact ripe for rediscovery.
Musical 1985 90 mins
Director: Alan Clarke
Once regarded as something of an oddity, if not a misstep, in the career of Alan Clarke, Billy the Kid is undoubtedly the only vampire snooker musical in cinema history and a genuine cult artefact destined for rediscovery.
One of the legendary television director’s few forays into features, Clarke collaborated with screenwriter Trevor Preston for the story of a duel between backstreet snooker player Billy Kid (Phil Daniels) and world champion Maxwell Randall (Alun Armstrong). The film was made at the height of snooker’s improbably success on British television, and Preston was inspired to write the tale from watching a showdown between young pretender Jimmy White and veteran Ray Reardon (nicknamed ‘Dracula). Clarke’s contrasting of ostentatious musical numbers with claustrophobic and sterile locations betray his longstanding interest in the work of Bertholt Brecht, and composer George Fenton (a recent Oscar-winner for Gandhi at the time) supplies the wonderful score with its eccentric songs and diverse switches of style. One of the strangest films to emerge from 1980s Britain (in a decade that offered a fair few contenders); Billy the Kid is a delightful slice of eccentricity from one of the UK’s most uncompromising filmmakers.
Comedy 1935 69 mins Director: 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’.
Drama 2018 124 mins Director: Christiaan Olwagen
A Boy George-obsessed smalltown boy joins the South African Defence Force army choir, in this quirky Apartheid-era musical drama.
Musical 2016 128 mins Director: Damien Chazelle
Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone channel old-school Hollywood glamour in this bright and playful romantic musical from director Damien Chazelle (Whiplash).
Musical 2015 127 mins Director: Spike Lee
Spike Lee’s bold and vivacious hip-hop musical restages an ancient Greek battle-of-the-sexes in 21st-century Chicago.
Drama 1936 77 mins Director: J. Elder Wills
A black London docker becomes a famous opera singer in this stirring musical drama starring Paul Robeson
Musical 1934 66 mins Director: John Baxter
Rarely-seen 1930s British musical about two African American travelling minstrels in search of entertainment work.
Comedy 1951 103 mins Director: Gene Kelly
Hollywood’s troubled transition from silent to talking pictures at the end of the 1920s provided the inspiration for this greatest of movie musicals.
Comedy 1986 94 mins Director: 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'.
Musical 1944 113 mins Director: Vincente Minnelli
Vincente Minnelli’s hymn to family, home and community is a musical miracle with Judy Garland as its beating heart.
Musical 1953 110 mins Director: George Sidney
Howard Keel and Kathryn Grayson brush up on their Shakespeare.
Musical 1954 176 mins Director: George Cukor
Judy Garland breaks your heart in a performance of devastating emotion.
Musical 1953 101 mins Director: David Butler
Doris Day shares her secret love in this whip-crackin’ musical western.
Featuring Phil Daniels
Drama 1983 107 mins Director: Mike Leigh
Tim Roth, Phil Daniels and Gary Oldman star in Mike Leigh’s TV film about an East End family try to stay afloat during a recession.
Children's 1972 52 mins Director: David Eady
Fun-packed comedy for kids, in which a boy befriends a baby elephant – then teams up with his friends to stop it being sold
Featuring Alun Armstrong
Horror 2017 85 mins Director: Matthew Holness
"Can you spy him deep within? Little Possum. Black as sin." The reliably deranged Sean Harris is plagued by an evil puppet in this dark, brooding fable from Matthew Holness.
Directed by Alan Clarke
1968 26 mins Silent Director: Alan Clarke
Alun Owen and director Alan Clarke's extraordinary power-play charts the explosive sexual dynamic between the titular heroine and her obsessive lover.
Drama 1986 93 mins Director: Alan Clarke
A married man seduces two teenage babysitters in Alan Clarke’s mix of bawdy comedy and social comment, based on Andrea Dunbar’s Bradford plays.
Drama 1982 76 mins Director: Alan Clarke
Tim Roth burst onto British screens with his coruscating performance as a teenage skinhead in this TV play from Alan Clarke and David Leland.
Drama 1967 27 mins Director: Alan Clarke
Two strangers (Wendy Craig and Colin Blakely) come together in a park shelter and engage in a frank, confessional and confrontational conversation.
1968 26 mins Director: Alan Clarke
Alan Clarke directs Roy Minton’s intimate play detailing the frank yet touching relationship between a brash young miner and his gran.
1968 26 mins Director: Alan Clarke
Veteran character actor Ronald Fraser plays a middle-aged man trapped in the dull routine of his Saturday-afternoon love affair.
Fantasy 2020 92 mins Director: Chino Moya
A series of intense and increasingly disturbing allegories about humanity's darker instincts culminates in a grotesque and compelling debut feature from Chino Moya.
Drama 2020 118 mins Director: Agnieszka Holland
Agnieszka Holland’s fascinating biopic of Jan Mikolášek, a 20th century Czech herbalist whose great success masked the grimmest of secrets.
Documentary 2021 86 mins Director: Lisa Immordino Vreeland
Creative dual-portrait documentary of Truman Capote and Tennessee Williams, two of the greatest figures in 20th Century American Literature.
Romance 2020 116 mins Director: Boaz Yakin
Incorporating expressive and exultant dance sequences, Aviva is a restless modern love story that explores the complexities of gender dynamics.
Comedy 2020 106 mins Director: Lawrence Michael Levine
At a remote lake house, a filmmaker plays a calculated game of desire and jealousy in the pursuit of a work of art that blurs the boundaries between autobiography and invention.
Documentary 2020 86 mins Director: Lisa Rovner
The remarkable untold story of electronic music’s female pioneers, who embraced machines and their liberating technologies to transform how we produce and listen to music today.