Manchester Film Festival 2016, preview: Sporting lives and wonder women

Suzy Prince

Following a successful inauguration last year, Manchester Film Festival returns – extending across the city to venues including HOME.

The Manchester Film Festival will open with the international premiere of Dennis Viollet – A United Man, screening as the Opening Night Gala feature at HOME. This portrait of the Busby Babe footballer, who was born in Fallowfield, and went on to survive the Munich air crash in which many of his Manchester United team mates were killed, is especially intimate as it is directed by Viollet’s daughter, Rachel. The film will also screen as part of the ‘Sports Sunday Super line-up’, which features a selection of sports-related films, including Dennis Rodman’s Big Bang in Pyongyang from Manchester filmmaker Colin Offland. This brings you the true story of what happened when retired basketball player Dennis Rodman took a team of former-NBA players to North Korea and staged the most controversial game of basketball the world has never seen. Fascinating stuff…

Running alongside Wonder Women, MANIFF includes a selection of international films featuring inspirational women

Running alongside Wonder Women festival, which celebrates women, innovation and creativity in all forms, Manchester Film Festival includes a selection of international films directed by or featuring inspirational women, will screen at the Odeon Printworks. The line-up includes several international premieres, including Cordelia Moore’s romantic thriller West of Redemption,  and the documentary Right Footed, about Jessica Cox: a woman born without arms who has gone on to become a licensed pilot and leading advocate for disabled people.

Then there’s Music Saturday, concentrating on music in film, and including the world premiere of Vince Giordano – There’s a Future in the Past, a documentary about the Brooklyn-born jazz musician who wrote the music to Boardwalk Empire and numerous Woody Allen films. Also screening is Lunar Orbit, a documentary about the British electronic group the Orb.

The festival closes with There Should be Rules, a Scandinavian coming-of-age drama directed by Linda Maria Birbeck. The closing night also includes an award ceremony celebration where the Manchester Bee awards return for a second year, with films competing over several categories, including the coveted ‘Film of the Festival.’

Culture Guides

Cinema

It’s almost that most wonderful time of the year and there’s all kinds of festive programming and counter-programming in the cinemas of Manchester and the North.

Ren Hang: Wake Up Together at Open Eye Gallery

Exhibitions

Tubism, pottery, same-sex intimacy and art education; this month’s Exhibitions Guide has it all. (Even a tentative mention of Christmas.)

Families

Luminous adventures, festive fixes, Drag Queen Storytime and New Year’s Eve parties with nippers to book now for … look no further for the best things to do with kids.

Poet Nia Davies at No Matter #4.

Literature

December sees some great events lined up for those readers who have been good this year – read on to find out about the live literature gifts we have wrapped up for you, and find out where to buy some Christmas presents of your own…

Music

This month’s music guide features some of the most exciting underground artists from around the world, as well as homegrown Manchester talent.

Theatre in Manchester and the North

Theatre

Contemporary circus, slapstick comedy, burlesque and immersive dining. Our theatre guide spans the festive season and beyond.

Tours and Activities

This month we are highlighting some of the top multilingual tours and activities Manchester has to offer.

Things to do right now

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Cinema 2 November–13 December 2018, from £5

Peterloo at HOME

Cinema 9 November–13 December 2018, from £5

Widows at HOME

Families 6–15 December 2018, from £6

Black Beauty at Z-arts

Activity 24 November–15 December 2018, from £4

World of Music at Band on the Wall

PAPER Gallery in Manchester presents Tim Ellis - Cypher
Exhibitions 10 November–15 December 2018, FREE

Tim Ellis: Cypher at PAPER Gallery

A Christmas Carol at Theatre Deli
Theatre 30 November–16 December 2018, from £35.00

A Christmas Carol at Theatre Deli

Red Squirrel at Lightwaves
Festivals 7–16 December 2018, FREE

Lightwaves 2018 at The Quays

Cinema 3 November–18 December 2018, from £6.8

Comedy Genius at Showroom, Sheffield

Re: work at The Holden Gallery
Exhibitions 5 November–19 December 2018, FREE

Re: work at The Holden Gallery

RNCM Autumn Season Creative Tourist
Music 6 September–19 December 2018, from £5

RNCM Autumn Season

Cinema 7–20 December 2018, from £5.50

The Old Man & the Gun at HOME

MONITOR exhibition, AIR Gallery, Altrincham
Exhibitions 6–22 December 2018, FREE

MONITOR at AIR Gallery