Mild themes, mild violence, infrequent coarse language
Josef von Sternberg,
THE BLUE ANGEL Weimar Germany 1930
The film which started the infamous pairing of director Josef von Sternberg and star Marlene Dietrich centres on a prudish professor who is appalled when a burlesque troupe, starring the wanton Lola Lola, arrives in town. Filmed in simultaneously English and German The Blue Angel is an icon of 20th century cinema.
DOUBLE INDEMNITY USA 1944
The quintessential film noir, Double Indemnity epitomises the snappy dialogue and highly-stylised aesthetic for which the genre is known. Barbara Stanwyck stars as the seductive femme fatale and Fred MacMurray the insurance salesman bewitched by her charms in Billy Wilder’s classic version of James M Cain’s thriller.
ORPHEUS France 1950
Surrealist Jean Cocteau's retooling of the ancient Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice beautifully marries his artistic eye with his penchant for innovative special effects. Orpheus is a renowned left-bank poet, now out-of-vogue, and following several mystical events, he must travel to the Underworld to rescue his wife, Eurydice.
TOKYO STORY Japan 1953
Yasujiro Ozu's Tokyo Story is perhaps the cinema's most achingly beautiful study of the human condition. Set in post-war Japan, it follows an elderly couple as they travel from the countryside to visit their children in Tokyo. Ozu's masterpiece regularly rates amongst the greatest films ever made.
IMITATION OF LIFE USA 1959
Douglas Sirk, the undisputed king of melodrama, distills his mastery into Imitation of Life, his Hollywood swansong. During a beach outing, aspiring actress, Lora, and her daughter meet Annie—a black woman who is hard on her luck—and Sara-Jane, her pale-skinned daughter, and the four from a life-long bond.
THE LEOPARD Italy 1963
Based on the celebrated novel by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa., Luchino Visconti’s The Leopard focusses on the aristocratic house of Salina, and the Prince at its head, during the tumultuous years of Italy's Risorgimento. Starring Burt Lancaster, Claudia Cardinale and Alain Delon, this luscious Palme d'Or-winning drama is a cinematic masterpiece.