After puncturing the pomposity of Anglo-Saxon politics in The Thick of It and Veep, comic titan Armando Iannucci turns his sardonic eye to Russian history. Upon the sudden death of their glorious leader Stalin, a group of political mercenaries, ranging from his son to the Foreign Secretary, all hatch personal schemes to wrestle control of the Soviet state.
Showcasing a wonderful mix of the world’s leading comic actors (Jeffrey Tambor, Michael Palin) and those more known for their dramatic turns (Steve Buscemi, Jason Isaacs, Andrea Riseborough), Iannucci has crafted a maniacally funny film that exposes the corruption and nepotism at the heart of power. And while Iannucci's adept handling of such blackly comic gallows humour is no surprise, he notably refuses to trivialise the solemn horrors of Stalin's reign. A cult comedy in the making, The Death of Stalin is a riotous satire of the grisly extremes of political machination.
Comedy 2018 95 mins Director: Carlos López Estrada
While on probation, a man begins to re-evaluate his relationship with his volatile best friend, in this electrifying Sundance hit.
A Simple Favour
Comedy 2018 117 mins Director: Paul Feig
Paul Feig's delicious postmodern noir, with Anna Kendrick as a blogger investigating the disappearance of her best friend (Blake Lively).
Comedy 2000 97 mins Director: Simon Cellan Jones
Daniel Craig impresses in a tough but sensitive portrait of a man living with schizophrenia
Under the Tree
Comedy 2017 89 mins Director: Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurdsson
A neighbourly dispute over an obtrusive tree spirals violently out of control, in this cutting Icelandic comedy from the producers of Rams.
Talk About Jacqueline
Comedy 1942 70 mins Director: Harold French
Jacqueline journeys to the French Riviera to escape her controversial past and find an eligible bachelor in this comedy-drama lead by the wonderful Carla Lehmann.
Oh, Mr. Porter!
Comedy 1937 84 mins Director: Marcel Varnel
A bumbling railway worker played by Will Hay is appointed as stationmaster in the isolated, and apparently haunted, Northern Irish town of Buggleskelly.
Best Films of 2018
Drama 2016 103 mins Director: Maysaloun Hamoud
Three strong, independent Israeli-Palestinian women try to square their liberated, hedonistic lifestyles with the stultifying restrictions of conservative family life, in Maysaloun Hamoud's charming and vital drama.
God's Own Country
Drama 2017 105 mins Director: Francis Lee
A troubled young sheep farmer falls for a hired hand in this stunning debut from Francis Lee.
Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami
Documentary 2017 115 mins Director: Sophie Fiennes
Grace Jones is laid bare in this intimate and electrifying insight into the fascinating world of a pop-cultural phenomenon.
Comedy 2017 71 mins Director: Sally Potter
Following some unexpected revelations, a celebration quickly takes a turn for the worse in Sally Potter's razor-sharp comedy.
The Florida Project
Drama 2017 112 mins Director: Sean Baker
Tangerine director Sean Baker presents another visionary take on the wild ups and dangerous downs of life in America’s underbelly, featuring an Oscar-nominated turn from Willem Dafoe.
Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool
Biopic 2017 106 mins Director: Paul McGuigan
Annette Bening and Jamie Bell bring to life the true story of the love affair between Gloria Grahame and young, Liverpudlian actor Peter Turner.
Featuring Steve Buscemi
Drama 2017 86 mins Director: Christina Choe
Andrea Riseborough is extraordinary in this disquieting drama about a woman convinced that she was kidnapped as a child and might have found her real parents.
Lean on Pete
Drama 2017 122 mins Director: Andrew Haigh
The ravishing fourth feature from Andrew Haigh (45 Years, Weekend) sees a boy and a horse embark on a Huckleberry Finn-esque journey across America in search of home.
Film noir 1991 99 mins Director: Quentin Tarantino
Quentin Tarantino explodes onto the screen with his debut feature following a jewellery heist gone horribly, violently wrong.
Comedy 1996 91 mins Director: Steve Buscemi
Venerable character actor Steve Buscemi steps behind the camera in this profound character study on a lonely, alcoholic, and unemployed mechanic.
The Big Lebowski
Comedy 1998 117 mins Director: Joel Coen
Arguably one of the greatest comedies of modern times; the Coen brothers’ deconstructed film noir following slacker hero ‘The Dude’ (Jeff Bridges).
Directed by Armando Iannucci
In the Loop
Comedy 2009 106 mins Director: Armando Iannucci
Armando Iannucci returns to the world of his hit show The Thick of It as Malcolm Tucker (Peter Capaldi) and Simon Foster (Tom Hollander) deal with a Middle-East crisis of their own making.
Mifune : The Last Samurai
Documentary 2016 80 mins Director: Steven Okazaki
The on and off-screen character of Toshiro Mifune, Japan’s first international movie star, is explored in this illuminating documentary exploring the life and legacy of this mercurial icon.
Drama 2018 99 mins Director: Camille Vidal-Naquet
The daily misfortunes of a lonesome rent boy are laid bare in this tough but tender portrait of life on the fringes of society.
Drama 2018 105 mins Director: Paul Dano
Carey Mulligan and Jake Gyllenhaal play a couple on the rocks in Paul Dano’s directorial debut, an elegant 1950s-set melodrama.
Bergman: A Year in a Life
Documentary 2018 117 mins Director: Jane Magnusson
A fascinating and unflinching study of the brilliance of Ingmar Bergman’s extraordinary career, crafted around one of his most prolific and creatively fruitful years.
Drama 2018 106 mins Director: Lukas Dhont
Lukas Dhont's breathtaking debut feature encompasses the heartache, courage, and punishing training of a ballerina transitioning in her teenage years.
Drama 2017 154 mins Director: Mike Leigh
Mike Leigh orchestrates a superb ensemble cast in this rousing tale of working class uprising and its violent suppression in Manchester in 1819.