Director Christoper Nolan is curating a special season of films at BFI Southbank to mark the release of his latest, Dunkirk.
Christoper Nolan Presents will run throughout July and will feature films that have inspired the director’s latest film.
The season will include a special preview screening of Dunkirk on Thursday 13 July, which will be presented in 70mm and include an introduction from the director himself.
“You might expect a season of films leading up to a screening of Dunkirk to be a selection of war movies,” said Nolan.
But I chose to approach Dunkirk more as survival story than war film. One look at James Jones’ essay on ‘Phony War Films’ (in which he takes down several of my old favourites) immediately shows you the perils of taking on real-life combat in a dramatic motion picture. In Jones’ estimation All Quiet on the Western Front (Lewis Milestone, 1930) said it first and best: war dehumanises. Revisiting that masterpiece it is hard to disagree that the intensity and horror have never been bettered. For me, the film demonstrates the power of resisting the convention of finding meaning and logic in individual fate.
“Most of the other films in this series fall into two different, but overlapping categories. From established classics of tension like The Wages of Fear (Henri-Georges Clouzot, 1953) and Alien (Ridley Scott, 1979) through to the more recent ticking-clock nail-biters Speed (Jan de Bont, 1994) and Tony Scott’s final film, the relentless Unstoppable (2010), our season explores the mechanics and uses of suspense to modulate an audience’s response to narrative.”
You can find out more about Christopher Nolan Presents at the BFI website.