After the year we’ve had, I’m sure we’ve all sought solace onscreen with something to make us feel some sense of normality – maybe a guilty pleasure that we have watched countless times. But what is a ‘guilty pleasure’? If you went by the dictionary definition, it would apply to something you secretly like, despite popular opinion. But we believe that a guilty pleasure can also be a film that is your comfort blanket, or a film that you rely on for chills, laughter or all-round happiness. The film could be a masterpiece, a teen classic or a B-movie with a cult following. Regardless, a guilty pleasure is a film you return to again and again. Maybe we’ve included your own guilty pleasure here in our programme – whether you know it yet or not!
Choose from ’90s-style influencers in Clueless; Cronenberg body horror in Videodrome; Motown martial arts in The Last Dragon; the ultimate B-movie cult slasher Sleepaway Camp; or a scream queen, a preacher and The Hoff in space with Star Crash. Or better still, choose them all!
Amy Heckerling / USA / 1995 / 97 mins
Based on the Jane Austen novel Emma, Clueless is a charming and stylish romp that does not take itself too seriously, yet is far more intelligent and profound than its veneer suggests. Through the musings and pontifications of protagonist Cher Horowitz, this classic satire provides astute observations on wealth, privilege, class dynamics and the politics of teenage life. A film which launched a thousand acting careers, this truly is a generational touchstone, and a jewel in the teen movie canon.
Saturday November 6th, The Gate Multiplex, 16:45.
Wednesday November 10th, Gate Midleton & Mallow, 20:00
The Last Dragon
Michael Schultz / USA / 1985 / 109 mins
Everyone knows Motown Records, the Detroit home of soul and R&B, but fewer remember Motown’s 1980s kung-fu movie, and what a glorious fusion of music and martial arts it was! On a quest to discover the highest level of martial artistry, Leroy Green (Taimak) faces adversity from power-hungry fighter Sho’nuff (Julius Carry) while rushing to save a threatened music TV host (played by former Prince protégé Vanity). Guaranteed to entertain, The Last Dragon will leave you with a smile on your face and ‘Rhythm of the Night’ in your ears.
Sunday November 7th, The Gate Multiplex, 20:15.
Robert Hiltzic / USA / 1983 / 84 mins
Ricky and his introverted cousin, Angela, are sent to Camp Arawak for the summer, but the festive atmosphere is soon disrupted when the campers start dying in bizarre and violent ways. The first slasher to feature an age-appropriate cast, rather than adults playing teens, Robert Hiltzic’s low-budget cult horror boasts some unforgettable performances (especially from the late Desiree Gould as Aunt Martha), era-defining men’s fashion and an ending that’s still controversial to this day.
Tuesday November 9th, The Gate Multiplex, 20:45.
Luigi Cozzi (as Lewis Coates) / USA, Italy / 1978 / 92 mins
Space smuggler Stella Star and her alien sidekick Akton become unlikely heroes when the Emperor of the Galaxy (Christopher Plummer) hires them to rescue his son from the clutches of evil Count Zarth Arn and his robot golems. Emerging from the production house of Roger Corman, directed by Luigi Cozzi (Hercules), and featuring scream queen Caroline Munroe, former evangelist preacher Marjoe Gortner and a breakout performance from David Hasselhoff, Star Crash is a dazzling space opera you’ll never forget.
Saturday November 6th, The Gate Multiplex, 20:45.
David Cronenberg / Canada, USA / 1983 / 87 mins
David Cronenberg is the maestro of body horror cinema and Videodrome is arguably his greatest, and certainly most prescient, work. Trash TV channel president Max Renn (James Woods), on the hunt for new content, discovers ‘Videodrome’, a broadcast signal transmitting acts of extreme violence and torture. But Renn’s search for the signal’s source leads him into a hallucinatory world of body morphing, sadomasochism and right-wing conspiracies. Also featuring a breakout film role for Deborah Harry, Videodrome could be a reflection on the current digital age, despite hailing from the days of VHS. Long live the new flesh!
Friday November 12th, The Gate Multiplex, 20:30.
Late Night Shorts
Various / International / 2021 / 99 mins
Murder! Mayhem! Sex! Death! Celebrating the strange and bizarre – filmmaking from the fringes for midnight movie-lovers. NSFW!
DEEP LEARNING DEATH* Thorsten Fleisch
A father-son-AI relationship triangle goes from weird to murderous.
HOUSE ROXY Noel Holmes
Strange happenings going on at a rental property – the auctioneer goes to investigate.
A PUFF BEFORE DYING Michael Reich, Mike Pinkney
A wild night of drugs and drugged-up driving ends in tragedy for three teenage girls that happen to be marionettes.
ISOLAMENTO Carmelo Zucco
Isolamento is a grand culmination of the themes: isolation, fear, beauty, gluttony, assimilation, environment and sexuality, merged into one great stream of consciousness.
DIVERSION Mathieu Mégemont
Joël, a small-town journalist, finds himself trapped in the stories he usually writes.
DOG’S LIFE Edoardo Maria Brighenti
What happens when a cat dreams of being a dog instead?
CRYING FREE SEX (クライングフリーセックス) Tomohiko Iwasaki
Infiltrating a syndicate, Cobra and Naomi have to fight their enemies with their genitals connected.
IN THE AIR TONIGHT Andrew Norman Wilson
An urban legend about the smash Phil Collins hit induces an uncanny trip through 1980s LA.
Available Online, November 19th to November 21st.