When an eccentric spiritualist summons a man’s first wife, the ghost refuses to leave, much to his and his second wife’s frustration in the wonderful comedy based on one of Noël Coward’s most beloved plays. Rex Harrison and Constance Cummings are great as the husband and second wife, but the funniest turns come from Kay Hammond as the spoilt first wife, brattily trying to win her husband back, and Margaret Rutherford as the batty medium.
Blithe Spirit is one of David Lean’s earliest films as a director. The film was not a commercial success, but is now regarded as perhaps the best film adaptation of a Coward play. The delightful special effects won an Oscar. Restoration supported by The David Lean Foundation.
Four Adventures of Reinette and Mirabelle
Comedy 1986 99 mins Director: Eric Rohmer
Eric Rohmer's delightful, episodic account of the blossoming friendship between a gauche, highly opinionated country girl and a more laid-back Parisian student.
Pauline at the Beach
Comedy 1982 95 mins Director: Eric Rohmer
Eric Rohmer's final collaboration with the great cinematographer Nestor Almendros follows a holidaying teenager as she begins to navigate the adult world.
A Good Marriage
Comedy 1981 100 mins Director: Eric Rohmer
Eric Rohmer's pleasingly precise portrait of obstinately perverse longing, with Béatrice Romand as the student determined to marry a uninterested lawyer.
Comedy 1993 99 mins Director: Joe Dante
Joe Dante (Gremlins) directs this affectionate homage to 1950s sci-fi cinema, with John Goodman as a cigar-chomping B-movie producer trying to cash in on the Cuban missile crisis.
La Grande Bouffe
Comedy 1973 130 mins Director: Marco Ferreri
Marco Ferreri's provocative and controversial satire about four friends who retreat to a country mansion with the intention of eating themselves to death.
Smiles of a Summer Night
Comedy 1955 109 mins Director: Ingmar Bergman
Ingmar Bergman’s Cannes prize-winning comedy assembles various couples in a country house in 1900.
Drama 1986 185 mins Director: Jean-Jacques Beineix
Jean-Jacques Beineix’s story of a volatile, highly sexual relationship was one of the most successful French films of the 1980s.
The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Period drama 1925 91 mins Director: Rupert Julian
'Man of a thousand faces' Lon Chaney stars in the first version of Gaston Leroux's oft-filmed novel.
Celine and Julie Go Boating
Drama 1974 194 mins Director: Jacques Rivette
Jacques Rivette's exhilarating combination of theatricality, paranoia and 'la vie Parisienne' follows two young women as they enter a mysterious realm upon eating a magic sweet.
The Ipcress File
Crime 1965 108 mins Director: Sidney J. Furie
The coolest spy of all – Michael Caine’s Harry Palmer – makes his brilliant big screen debut in this landmark British spy thriller.
A Matter of Life and Death
Fantasy 1946 104 mins Director: Michael Powell
Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s timeless romantic fantasy, with David Niven as an airman trapped between life and death.
Drama 2009 102 mins Director: Bruno Dumont
A Catholic nun falls in with some young Arabs and embraces fundamentalist Islam in Bruno Dumont’s provocative film.
Directed by David Lean
Romance 1945 86 mins Director: David Lean
Noël Coward’s tale of a love affair, thrillingly played out with tight British reserve.
Oliver Twist (1946)
Period drama 1948 116 mins Director: David Lean
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.
Period drama 1947 118 mins Director: David Lean
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.
In Which We Serve
War 1942 114 mins Director: David Lean
Noel Coward and David Lean direct this affecting drama of a Royal Navy crew recalling their lives in flashback, as their ship sinks.
The Passionate Friends
Romance 1949 91 mins Director: David Lean
David Lean’s other, lesser known film about a love triangle spent too long in Brief Encounter’s shadow, but is now regarded as a fine, gripping drama.
Crime 1950 115 mins Director: David Lean
David Lean’s film of an infamous 19th-century crime of passion stars his then-wife Ann Todd as the society lady on trial for murdering her lover.
Period drama 1964 102 mins Director: Kaneto Shindo
Stylish, symbolic and erotically charged Japanese horror in which the fortunes of a murderous mother-and-daughter team are upended by a strangely masked samurai.
Dr. Mabuse, the Gambler Part 1 (The Great Gambler - A Picture of the Time)
Crime 1922 155 mins Director: Fritz Lang
Fritz Lang's legendary epic of silent cinema, following the diabolical crimes of the titular arch-villain, is a masterpiece of conspiracy, fear and paranoia.
Dr Mabuse, the Gambler Part 2 (Inferno, A Game for the People of Our Age)
Crime 1922 115 mins Director: Fritz Lang
The second part of Fritz Lang's legendary epic of silent cinema, following the diabolical crimes of the titular arch-villain.
1959 119 mins Director: Yasujiro Ozu
Yasujiro Ozu's late-career, elegiac masterpiece about a travelling kabuki troupe that returns to the seaside town they visited years before.
Horror 1932 73 mins Director: Carl Th. Dreyer
The first sound-film by one of the greatest of all filmmakers, Carl Theodor Dreyer, is akin to a waking-dream; guiding the viewer on a trance-like journey between reality and the supernatural.
Documentary 2017 72 mins Director: Carol Salter
Carol Salter's award-winning portrait of a young Chinese woman training to become a mortician is a tender and reflective elegy on death and the fragility of life.