Partner Events, Summer 2024

LRB Screen X MUBI: ‘Arabian Nights: Volume 1’

Monday 20 May 2024, 20:00
The Garden Cinema, London

Arabian Nights: Volume 1, The Restless One (2015), the first in a trilogy of films by the Portuguese auteur Miguel Gomes, uses the framing device and other structural elements of its titular inspiration to explore the state of austerity in contemporary Portugal across all strata of society. Tonally and formally various, weaving together stories from diverse sources, locations, characters and scenarios, it’s a satirical, sobering and invigorating account of how meaning is made, power challenged and justice sought. Introducing the film with a brief history of adaptations and reimaginings of the 1001 Nights will be the great mythographer and contributing editor at the LRB, Marina Warner.

The Last Days of Franz Kafka, with Toby Jones, James McVinnie and Julian Rhind-Tutt

Saturday 1 June 2024, 19:00
St Mary’s Church, Hay-on-Wye

The second weekend of this year’s Hay Festival coincides with the 100th anniversary of the last two days of Kafka’s life (he died, aged 40, on 3 June 1924), a tragic moment in literary history but one also charged with hope, because of his irrepressible spirit and immortal work, which survived despite its author’s wishes.

To mark the centenary, the London Review of Books returns to Hay with a one-off event, based on all the different ways our writers have thought about Kafka over the years, from Alan Bennett to Patricia Lockwood, Rivka Galchen to Adam Phillips – the chorus of voices which inspired the LRB Diary for 2024. Readings from these, and Kafka’s own later diary entries, by special guests Toby Jones and Julian Rhind-Tutt, will be interspersed with music from Max Richter’s The Blue Notebooks (itself inspired by Kafka’s journals) performed by the celebrated organist James McVinnie.

Sarah Maldoror in Focus

Saturday 8 June 2024, 18:30
The Garden Cinema, London

Sarah Maldoror (1929-2020) has been hailed as one of the great directors of anti-colonial cinema, finally starting to receive her due. We present an evening of screenings of her work, in partnership with the Garden Cinema; and we’re delighted to welcome her daughter Annouchka de Andrade, currently completing a digitised archive of her mother’s remarkable body of work, to introduce and discuss the films, in conversation with Jeremy Harding.

Monangambeee (1969, 17 minutes) tells the story of an anti-colonial activist detained by the Portuguese secret police in pre-independence Angola. Shot in Algeria and funded by the FLN, Monangambeee is both a gem of activist anti-colonial cinema and a forerunner of Maldoror’s best-known film, Sambizanga.

The Leningrad Hospital (1982, 52 minutes), commissioned by France 2 TV, speaks to Maldoror’s anxieties about the future of a Third World struggle deadlocked by the Cold War. Based on a story by Victor Serge, the great figure of the Left Opposition in Stalin’s heyday, The Leningrad Hospital pulls us out of Africa, and back in time, to the Soviet Union of the early 1930s.

Sambizanga (1972) was shot in Congo-Brazzaville and is set in Portuguese Angola in 1960, on the eve of the Angolan armed struggle. The film follows the desperate search of Mária for the whereabouts of her lover Domingos, a worker on a dam project who has been arrested by the colonial police. Most of the actors in this masterpiece had never appeared in front of a camera.

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

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