Saturday, 30 April 2011

Capital Celluloid - Day 120: Sunday May 1

The Devils: The Director's Cut (Russell, 1971): Barbican Cinema, 8.30pm

The East End Film Festival is in full swing now and the recommendations for the next two days are from there, starting with this genuinely shocking movie which is introduced by director Ken Russell.

Tom Huddleston's review in this week's Time Out sums it up well. Go out and beg, borrow or steal a ticket for this event:

The unexpurgated cut of Russell's ornate, near-unwatchable taboo-busting masterpiece receives only its second British screening. The only major addition is the infamous 'rape' of Christ, in which the 'possessed' nuns use a life-size statue of the Saviour as a rutting post, but although that sequence may seem relatively tame by modern standards, there's plenty here that's still incredibly shocking. The scenes of plague are truly vile, as are the climatic torture scenes. But what horrifies most is Russell's nihilistic view of the world in general, and humanity in particular: almost without exception, we are shown to be vain, lustful, perverse, self-serving, murderous, disease-ridden, exploitative, decadent, deluded creatures unworthy or incapable of salvation. Approach with extreme caution.

Here is an extract to give you a flavour.

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