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The original Godzilla is arguably the definitive monster movie - both a bold metaphor for the atomic age and a thrilling powerhouse of pioneering special effects. Directed by Ishiro Honda and starring Takashi Shimura as the revered palaeontologist who uncovers the horrible secret at the heart of the monster, a long dormant Jurassic beast awoken by the atom bomb. Don’t miss the film that instilled Japan – and the world – with an unquenchable appetite for destruction.
Made in 1954, Godzilla (Gojira) was Japan’s first foray into big budget sci-fi - costing ten times the budget of the average Japanese feature and twice as much as Seven Samurai – released the same year. The film created a monster that would enter the lexicon of popular culture, spawn fifty years of sequels and inspire a new genre: the kaiju eiga, or Japanese monster movie. Upon its release the film was cut, dubbed into English and retitled for American audiences, but it’s presented here in all its restored, original glory. Now regarded as a classic, Godzilla is still regularly cited as among the top twenty Japanese films of all time.
Horror 1987 93 mins Director: Clive Barker
Clive Barker's dark vision of flesh, blood and Cenobites remains one of the most frighteningly original visions in horror.
Tetsuo II: Body Hammer
Horror 1991 81 mins Director: Shinya Tsukamoto
Shinya Tsukamoto's sequel has the Iron Man transforming into a cyberkinetic gun when a gang of vicious skinheads kidnap his son.
The Old Dark House
Comedy 1932 72 mins Director: James Whale
A group of weary travellers arrive at a spooky mansion with a madman on the loose, in this classic horror-comedy from James Whale (Bride of Frankenstein)
Horror 1993 103 mins Director: Michele Soavi
Michele Soavi’s compelling concoction of anarchic Evil Dead-style horror-comedy, tragic romance and gore.
Comedy 1968 96 mins Director: Juraj Herz
This story of a professional cremator whose increasingly deranged impulses are given free reign during Prague's Nazi occupation, is a brilliantly chilling mix of Dr Strangelove and Repulsion.
Horror 2002 101 mins Director: Hideo Nakata
A single mother desperately tries to shield her daughter from hidden terrors in her apartment block, in Hideo Nakata's chilling masterpiece.
Lodger: A Story of the London Fog
Crime 1926 91 mins Silent Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Ivor Novello plays a strange lodger who may be behind a number of Jack the Ripper-style killings in Alfred Hitchcock’s silent thriller.
The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Period drama 1925 91 mins Silent Director: Rupert Julian
'Man of a thousand faces' Lon Chaney stars in the first version of Gaston Leroux's oft-filmed novel.
By Our Selves
Animation & Artists Moving Image 2015 80 mins Director: Andrew Kötting
The latest psycho-geographical excursion from Andrew Kötting and Iain Sinclair
For Those in Peril
Drama 2013 92 mins Director: Paul Wright
An intense and mysterious drama about the lone survivor of a strange fishing accident who’s outcast and persecuted by his fellow villagers.
Distant Voices, Still Lives
Biopic 1988 81 mins Director: Terence Davies
Terence Davies' debut feature is a remarkable evocation of working-class family life in the 40s and 50s and a visionary exploration of memory.
Within Our Gates
Drama 1919 74 mins Silent Director: Oscar Micheaux
Oscar Micheaux’s startling silent classic – the earliest surviving feature from an African-American director – presents a fascinating black counterpoint to Griffith’s Birth of a Nation.
Featuring Takashi Shimura
Horror 1964 183 mins Director: Masaki Kobayashi
This stunningly beautiful anthology of Japanese ghost stories is one of the most meticulously crafted supernatural films ever made.
Crime 1950 88 mins Director: Akira Kurosawa
Credited with bringing Japanese cinema to worldwide audiences, Akira Kurosawa’s breakthrough tells the story of a murder in the woods from four differing perspectives.
Throne of Blood
Drama 1957 110 mins Director: Akira Kurosawa
A master of period-drama, Kurosawa (Rashomon, Seven Samurai) recasts Macbeth as a Japanese warlord in one of the greatest Shakespearean adaptations.
Drama 1954 207 mins Director: Akira Kurosawa
Farmers hire a band of samurai to defend them against marauding bandits in Kurosawa’s influential epic, a touchstone for action movies ever since.
Drama 1952 143 mins Director: Akira Kurosawa
Takashi Shimura is superb as a bureaucrat diagnosed with cancer in Akira Kurosawa’s lyrical and moving film about how we find meaning in our lives.
Film noir 1948 98 mins Director: Akira Kurosawa
Part gangster film, part melodrama and part social critique, Akira Kurosawa's first critical success follows the troubled friendship between a disillusioned doctor and a young yakuza.
Directed by Ishiro Honda
Science Fiction 1957 85 mins Director: Ishiro Honda
The team behind Godzilla (1954) reunites for Toho’s first colour widescreen sci-fi, an arresting spectacle about the arrival of an alien race and their giant, destructive robot.
Fidelio, Alice's Journey
Drama 2014 97 mins Director: Lucie Borleteau
When Alice takes a job as a ship’s engineer her fidelity towards her shore-bound fiancé is tested when she discovers a former lover is the ship’s captain.
An Episode in the Life of Iron Picker
Drama 2012 71 mins Director: Danis Tanovic
Oscar-winning director Danis Tanovic recreates a politically explosive true story from Bosnia in innovative style, casting a real-life family to relive their desperate struggle to secure life-saving medical treatment.
When I Saw You
Drama 2012 94 mins Director: Annemarie Jacir
Following the Six-Day War in 1967, a young Palestinian refugee boy yearns to be reunited with his father and joins a band of freedom fighters.
Drama 2016 95 mins Director: Mitra Tabrizian
An Iranian exile in London, who is haunted by his past, gets involved in the conflicts of a total stranger and has to see it through until the end, in this mesmerising slow-burn thriller.
Documentary 2012 156 mins Director: Shivendra Singh Dungarpur
A tribute to film archivist and obsessive cinephile P.K. Nair, and his long, hard fight to preserve India's precious film heritage.
Drama 2016 104 mins Director: Jeppe Ronde
Hannah Murray (Game of Thrones) and Josh O'Connor (God's Own Country), star in this haunting mystery drama inspired by true events.