We must admit, we’re a sucker for a night in with our favourite rom-coms but there are times when we’re just not in the mood for another viewing of Bring It On. Cut to Bird’s Eye View Film Festival, an annual celebration of women in film that has slowly but surely become one of Topshop’s favourite events of the year. Unlike other competitive festival this one’s focus is purely on the movies, shorts and documentary that are created by extraordinary women across the globe. And if there’s one thing we like more than Kirsten Dunst’s pom poms it’s girl power!
This year’s programme is more exciting than ever and is honing in on the talented and ever-growing pool of Arab women filmmakers. Happening across London in cultural meccas like the BFI Southbank, Barbican, ICA and Hackney Picturehouse, there’ll be inspiring feature length films, eye-opening documentaries, panel discussions, music events and premieres to boot. Overwhelmed with choice? Well, we’ve picked out some of the most exciting sounding events for you to pencil into your diary…
Friday 5th April
Lebanese Bashra El-Turk is the rising star of contemporary composition – I know, this festival is about films, but El-Turk is wowing audiences by putting her dramatic scores and east meets west melodies to films. Tonight she’s behind the chamber ensemble playing along to Lotte Reiniger’s The Adventures of Prince Achmed where there’s a promise of arresting scores and a new take on traditional instruments of the Middle East.
Short Films to Fall in Love With
Tuesday 9th April
Can’t make up your mind on what to see? Treat yourself to a night of all sorts. The Birds Eye View Arab Short Films: DFI Showcase will be showing off the best new work by up-and-coming filmmakers at the BFI. We’re mostly excited about Sanctity from hotly tipped young director, Ahd Kamel which recently featured at the Doha Tribeca Film Festival.
A Focus on Fashion Film
Tuesday 9th April
Any opportunity to see a new take on the endlessly evolving medium of the fashion film and we’re there! The ICA will be holding Fashion Loves Film: Arab Fashion Past and Present and we predict a night packed with culture. Charting the history of Middle Eastern fashion to up-to-the-minute accounts of the latest developments alongside the best fashion films from the region, there’s hardly time to hold your breath before a panel discussion on trends and breakout figures from the scene. Phew!
Great Love Stories
Wednesday 10th April
This year, BEV is finishing in style with a Closing Night Gala screening of the lauded feature film, Habibi, It’s the first feature set in Gaza for over 15 years and follows a forbidden love story amidst the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It also won Best Feature at 2012 Dubai Film Festival.
What are you waiting for? Browse the programme yourself and snap up a ticket pronto.