As 2014 winds to a close we take a look back at what has been a fantastic year for the Cinema For All Booking Scheme. With several new distributors joining the scheme and loads of new titles it’s been a bumper year for bookings and we’re hugely grateful to all the film societies and community cinemas who have helped make the scheme such a success. But what were the most popular films of the year?
5. (tie) The Rocket & Like Father, Like Son
In joint 5th place we have Kim Mourdant’s The Rocket and Hirokazu Koreeda’s Like Father, Like Son (and his earlier feature I Wish wasn’t far behind). Both these films were only added in the second half of the year so it’s great to see that many groups were quickly on board with these titles.
Both films provide a unique look at family and childhood and have impressed audiences up and down the country.
4. The Hunt
The Hunt is a real Booking Scheme favourite having featured in the Top 5 films of 2013 as well. The Oscar nominated drama is a powerful and riveting insight into prejudice, herd mentality and suspicion. Mads Mikkelsen gives a career-best performance as a popular teacher who is accused of the sexual abuse of a child and finds that the whole town turns against him, even though the evidence is flimsy and insubstantial and very possibly invented.
It’s an immeasurably gripping film and masterfully directed by Thomas Vinterberg whose forthcoming adaptation of Far From the Madding Crowd is hotly anticipated after The Hunt.
The first of two Chilean features in the Top 5, Gloria is a rare film focused on an older woman as the main character. Paulina Garcia is perfect as the eponymous Gloria, a divorcee looking to revitalise her love life now that her children have left home. Though her initial time with Rodolfo goes well he turns out to be far too tied down with his own divorce and free-spirited Gloria is not willing to let him bring her down.
The most popular Booking Scheme title ever topped the list last year and has managed second place this year as well. A certified film society hit No has played in dozens and dozens of community venues across the country. The final film in Pablo Larrain’s loose trilogy about Pinochet, No is the most positive, chronicling the downfall of Pinochet after he lost a referundum on his continued presidency which was only ever supposed to be an empty gesture towards democracy. Gael Garcia Bernal stars as an ad executive reluctantly brought in to run the campaign who figures out a way to bring optimism back into a country that has long suffered under dictatorship.
1. The Grand Budapest Hotel
No surprises here – The Grand Budapest Hotel is one of the most purely enjoyable films in recent memory and one of Wes Anderson’s very best. A comedic caper with an absolutely stellar turn from Ralph Fiennes, playing very much against type, The Grand Budapest Hotel is a perfect audience pleaser: clever, astoundingly inventive, playful and ever so funny.
How many of these have you shown?
Don’t forget all of these and many many more are available to book now from the Booking Scheme.