We earn a commission for products purchased through some links in this article.
Get your ticket to this year’s BFI London Film Festival today…
The BFI London Film Festival returns for its 59th edition on Wednesday, previewing some of the world’s best new films. The two-week showcase, which runs until 18 October will open with the European premiere of Suffragette and includes screenings of upcoming films, Carol, starring Cate Blanchett as a 1950s housewife involved in a lesbian affair, and Brooklyn, about a young woman who must choose between two men and two countries – both officially released next month. See some of the stars on the red carpet and join in as directors, cast and crew take part in Q&As and masterclasses. Click on to see our pick of the films you don’t want to miss out on…
The BFI London Film Festival runs from 7-18 October. Find out more information and get your ticket at bfi.org.uk/lff.
This year’s Opening Night screening is the first ever full-length film to tell the inspirational story of the early feminist movement’s foot soldiers who put everything on the line in the fierce fight for equality. At the centre is Maud (Carey Mulligan), a working wife and loving mother, who defies her husband and risks losing custody of her children to join the movement. The wonderful Meryl Streep and Helena Bonham Carter also star.
Can’t make it on the night? Audiences around the UK have the chance to see Opening Night red carpet footage and interviews with the film’s creators beamed live by satellite into their local cinema, followed by a special preview screening of Suffragette. See bfi.org.uk/lff for details.
Maggie Smith is sensational in the role she first played in the 1999 stage production of Alan Bennett’s play. Directed by Nicholas Hytner and based on Bennett’s real-life experience, this big screen adaptation delves into the unexpected bond Bennett formed with Miss Shepherd, a transient woman who spent 15 years living in her car – which was parked in his drive. Watch out for appearances from Frances de la Tour, Dominic Cooper and James Corden.
Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) stars as Dalton Trumbo, the Hollywood screenwriter whose career came to a crashing halt in the late 1940s when he was blacklisted for his political beliefs. The film documents his fight against the US government, which entangled Hollywood icons from Hedda Hoppe (played by the brilliant Helen Mirren) and John Wayne to Kirk Douglas and Otto Preminger.
Based on former television news producer Mary Mapes’ 2005 memoirs, this American political drama follows her and news anchor Dan Rather (Robert Redford) in their last days at CBS as the news report scandal - which exposed highly controversial documents that defamed then President, George Bush - unfolds. Cate Blanchett, who plays Mapes, will receive the BFI’s highest honour, the BFI Fellowship, on the night.
Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara give impeccable performances in this stylish 1950s New York-set romance, which will receive its UK Premiere. Blanchett plays married woman Carol Aird, who risks everything to be with department store worker, Therese Belivet (Mara). Director Todd Haynes will attend, along with Blanchett and Mara.
The European Premiere of stirring drama, Brooklyn, is an absolute must-see. Set in the 1950s, a young Eilis Lacey (played by Saoirse Ronan) moves to New York from her home in Ireland, in order to find work. When an unexpected event takes her back to Ireland, she’s forced to make an agonising decision between two men and two countries. Look out for stars Domhnall Gleeson and Emory Cohen.
Finally, closing the Festival is this fascinating biopic of pioneering Apple co-founder, Steve Jobs, which comes four years after he died from pancreatic cancer, aged 56. Directed by Danny Boyle, Michael Fassbender takes the title role, with Kate Winslet as marketing chief, Joanna Hoffman, who challenges Jobs for not prioritising his family more.