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All films start at 7.45pm unless otherwise stated.

Friday 19 and Saturday 20 January

BLADE OF THE IMMORTAL (18)

Mugen no jûnin (original title)

After a legendary battle, and haunted by the brutal murder of his sister, the supremely skilled samurai Manji becomes cursed with immortality. Aware that only through fighting evil can he regain his soul, Manji promises to help a young girl avenge her parents, who were killed by a group of master swordsmen led by ruthless warrior Anotsu.

Takashi Miike adapts Hiroaki Samura’s manga story, creating an entertaining samurai epic, including graphic fantasy violence and a comic sensibility as Manji pursues his relentless and bloody mission of vengeance.

Japan/UK (Japanese dialogue with English subtitles), 2017, 141 mins

Reviews: :: The Guardian :: The Observer :: The Telegraph ::

Further information regarding scenes used by the BBFC to determine the film's certification, may be found at the extended classification link - please note that this page contains spoilers.

Tuesday 23 January

THE LOST HONOUR OF KATHARINA BLUM (15)

Die verlorene Ehre der Katharina Blum (original title)

The Lost Honour of Katharina Blum is a key political film of the New German Cinema, co-directed and adapted by Volker Schlöndorff and Margarethe von Trotta from the controversial novel by Heinrich Böll. Angela Winkler plays the eponymous young woman enveloped in a climate of fear and paranoia, whose life is scrutinized by the police and slowly destroyed by the media after she meets a young man suspected by the authorities of being a political activist.

West Germany (German dialogue with English subtitles), 1975, 106 mins

States of Danger and Deceit: European Political Thrillers in the 1970s, a touring season presented by HOME, Manchester, as part of BFI THRILLER. With the support of the BFI, awarding funds from The National Lottery.

Thursday 25 January

THE PRINCE OF NOTHINGWOOD (15)

Nothingwood (original title)

Sonia Kronlund’s touching and often hilarious debut is an entertaining documentary on the subject of Salim Shaheen, the Ed Wood of Afghanistan. A force of nature, Shaheen has managed to make and

self-distribute no fewer than 110 films despite the country’s

ongoing war and past conflicts, often employing innovative production techniques such as using real blood and real guns with real ammunition.

15 years of visiting and reporting from Afghanistan as a radio journalist inform Kronlund’s thoughtful voiceover, complementing an intriguing love letter to filmmaking.

France/Germany (French, Dari and English dialogue), 2017, 85 mins

Reviews: :: The Guardian :: The Observer ::

Friday 26 January

INGRID GOES WEST (15)

The dark side of social media raises it head in this this jet-black stalker comedy, brilliantly skewering dangerous obsession and the sham of Instagrammed perfection. Ingrid is fresh out of the psychiatric ward and on the trail of Taylor Sloane, social media celebrity extraordinaire, whose online feeds overflow with sun-kissed, bohemian LA chic, a world away from Ingrid’s painful past. Flirting with psychological horror and tragedy, Ingrid Goes West is driven by a fearless lead performance from Aubrey Plaza, wittily questioning where sanity lies.

USA, 2017, 98 mins

Reviews: :: The Guardian :: The Observer :: The Telegraph ::

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Stoke Film Theatre, College Road, Stoke-On-Trent, Staffordshire ST4 2EH Registered Charity no. 504600