Now in its 10th year, the East End Film Festival has become one of the largest events of its kind in London. A packed nine day programme, spread across thirty East End locations, includes no fewer than 200 screenings showcasing an impressive range of premieres from across the globe and a series of film-focused music and arts events. Aware of the general election, there’s also a selection of thought-provoking films themed around cultural politics to get you in voting mood..
Out of such thrilling and comprehensive scheduling, lies a mammoth task in picking out some highlights but the celebration of how music challenged the neo-Nazi threat back in the 70's/early 80's has got to be a good start. Kicking off with RIOT, RACE, & ROCK N’ROLL: ROCK AGAINST RACISM 1978 - 1981 - a round table discussion hosted by Mark Steel and a panel that includes musicians Jerry Dammers, Tom Robinson, Feargal Sharkey, Sam Duckworth and filmmakers Don Letts and Gurinder Chadha. The festival also premieres the re-edit of Alan Miles acclaimed documentary WHO SHOT THE SHERIFF?, tracking the rise of the National Front in Britain during the 1970s. A RIOT OF OUR OWN, an exhibition of photos and artwork curated by original Rock Against Racism collaborators, will run at Vibe Gallery throughout the festival with Jerry Dammers (The Specials) on the decks for the opening night.
Phil Maxwell and Hazuan Hashim’s EAST END HERITAGE has been compiled from over thirty years of photographs and is a beautiful visual document of local meeting places, streets, and communities. This premiere screening at The Water Poet pub kick-starts the festivals HERITAGE PUB TRAIL - a sequence of unique screenings in ten of the East End’s oldest and best public houses, to provide Londoners with a perfect opportunity to unwind with a drink and a good film.
Opening Night Gala this Thursday features the award winning, 1969 film, Bronco Bullfrog - a gritty drama set in Stratford.
East End Film Festival 22 April - 30 April 2010 Various venues
Image: authors own