Dekker features in Norwood and Thornton Heath film festival

JANET SMITH, from the Save the David Lean Cinema Campaign, is looking forward to next week’s South Norwood and Thornton Heath Free Film Festival

The inaugural South Norwood and Thornton Heath Free Film Festival begins on Saturday.

This is part of the Free Film Festivals group which started in 2010 with the Peckham and Nunhead Free Film Festival and has expanded across south London, enabling community groups to stage their own festivals.

Thornton Heath's Desmond Dekker is one of the artists featured at the opening of the SNATH festival

Thornton Heath’s Desmond Dekker is one of the artists featured at the opening of the SNATH festival

The nattily titled SNATH group has assembled a great selection of movies and are showing them in special local spaces.

They start on Saturday October 25 at Stanley Halls with a night of music and film with a preview screening of the forthcoming UK Rap Battle documentary (Cert 15, 45min), followed by Bassweight (Dir Suridh Hassan, 2008, UK, Cert 15, 58min) a documentary looking at the early Dubstep scene charting the genre’s growth from obscure origins in south London, where Croydon has claims to be the spiritual home of Dub Step, to global recognition today.

Live performances from Hip Hop collective ODF and singer songwriter Little Liar will also be featured. Finally, to finish the night, excerpts from Desmond Dekker and the Israelites: Live in London (2002, UK, Cert U, 72min) celebrating the talent of the one-time Thornton Heath resident, from a concert recorded at Dingwalls.

The following evening (Sun Oct 26), there is a celebration of the 20th anniversary of Pulp Fiction at The Pawson’s Arms (69 Pawsons Road, CR0 2QA ) with a double bill of Quentin Tarantino films – 4pm for 4.30pm for Jackie Brown and 8pm Pulp Fiction.

On Tuesday October 28 at 1.45pm, Thornton Heath Darby and Joan Club’s Scratchley Hall (81 Brigstock Road) hosts a screening of Casablanca (Dir Michael Curtiz, 1942, US, Cert U, 102min), and at 4.30pm the original The Ladykillers (Dir Alexander Mackendrick, 1955, UK, Cert U, 90min). The doors will open at 1pm when music will be provided via a glorious gramophone by Rose Bartlett of To Have to Hold Vintage. During the interval between films (3.30pm to 4.30pm) music will be provided by pianist Gavin Waterhouse. Refreshments will be available for purchase.

Wednesday October 29 at 7pm sees an evening of curated short films from London filmmakers and a Q&A with some of the directors and writers, including Stephen Follows, who will be talking about his film making experiences. The Lord Napier (111 Beulah Road, CR7 8JG).

An_American_Werewolf_in_London_by_smalltownheroOn Thursday October 30 at 8pm at Norbury Park Lawn Tennis Club there’s Singalong Dirty Dancing. Featuring the iconic soundtrack, singing is encouraged, as is fancy dress.

The bar will be open before, during and after the screening.

The Festival closes on Friday October 31 back at Stanley Halls with a day of Halloween horror for young and not so young staring at 1.30pm with the spooky children’s favourite Frankenweenie from director Tim Burton followed by an evening screening of John Landis’ comedy-horror An American Werewolf in London at 7pm Stanley Halls, 12 South Norwood Hill, SE25 6AB.

Activities before and after Frankenweenie include scary face painting for children and the opportunity to star in their own scary film. All children must be accompanied by an adult.

The bar will be open in the evening serving themed cocktails by Syrup Junkie. Sinister happenings will fill the creepy corners of the Halls before the film.

Stanley Halls on South Norwood Hill, five minutes walk from Norwood Junction, is a fascinating complex of unique Edwardian buildings built between 1904 and 1911. This wonderful resource had been underused until 2011 when members of the community established The Stanley People’s Initiative with the aim to bring life back to the Halls.

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