Future Films Heads Up: London Film Festival for families
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- Published on Wednesday, 17 September 2014 11:30
- Last Updated on 14 September 2014
- Freda Cooper
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Red carpets, camera crews, photographers, celebs …… they’re all on their way to London for this year’s London Film Festival, which runs from Wednesday, 8th to Sunday, 19th October 2014. The big films have been announced – The Imitation Game, Mr Turner, Fury and Foxcatcher among them – and the likes of Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley and Steve Carrel are all expected to tread that red carpet.
So film fans will be in their element. But what if you’re looking for something more family orientated?
The good news is that the London Film Festival has a special strand dedicated to family movies, completed with a Family Gala screening.
That honour goes to the Danish/Belgian co-production Song Of The Sea, an animation from director Tomm Moore. The story of two children who grow up on a lighthouse and go in search of their missing mother, it’s full of Celtic magic and folklore and is completely hand-drawn – a refreshing change in these days of computer animation. Song Of The Sea is screened on Saturday, 18 and Sunday, 19 October.
Trailer: The Moomins On The Riviera
Perennial favourites The Moomins return in Moomins On The Riviera, with the family taking a trip to the South Of France to experience high society – and changing their name to De Moomin to make sure of a room at the best hotel! Released in time to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of their creator, Tove Jansson, this is another piece of hand-drawn animation and its much loved creatures have never looked better. Moomins On The Riviera is screened on Saturday, 11 and Saturday, 18 October.
The festival’s family offering has its own world premiere, Yellowbird, which is also the only feature film in the strand shown in 3-D. Featuring the voices of Danny Glover, Elliott Gould and Dakota Fanning, this tells the story of Yellowbird who is reluctant to leave his home – until he unexpectedly finds himself as the leader of a flock migrating to Africa. Yellowbird is screened on Saturday, 11 October.
And for the proverbial box of delights, there’s a special screening of animated shorts, all aimed at younger audiences. Hailing from all over the world, including Switzerland, South Africa and the Czech Republic, they run for anything from 3 to 30 minutes. The shortest hails from the UK and is the most anticipated of the lot as it comes from Aardman Animations, home of Wallace and Gromit. Ray’s Big Idea is the story of a prehistoric fish with a plan to improve his life. The shorts selection is screened on Sunday, 19 October.
The festival celebrates the 20th anniversary of Dreamworks Animation Studios with a special event, Dreamworks Animation: Taking Flight And Beyond. Hosted by director Dean DeBlois, producer Bonnie Arnold and special guest Cressida Cowell of How To Train Your Dragon fame, this gives a behind-the-scenes look at how its best-known films made it to the big screen, as well as the chance to see exclusive footage from the up-coming Penguins of Madagascar, which is released in early December. The Dreamworks Animation event takes place on Tuesday, 14 October.
The full London Film Festival programme is available from the event website, http://www.bfi.org.uk/lff. Tickets can be purchased online or from the festival box office at the BFI Southbank. Public booking opens on Thursday, 18 September at 10 am.
Film critic and radio presenter Freda Cooper has been a movie fan all her life – the best qualification for the job! A contributor to a number of film websites, she also presents her weekly podcast, Talking Pictures, a finalist in the UK Podcasters Awards. Her movie blog, formerly The Coops Review, is now also called Talking Pictures, and was shortlisted at this year’s UK Blog Awards. And you can hear her film reviews every Friday morning on BBC Surrey and BBC Sussex!