It seems that few of us these days are happy to simply rock up to a cinema the weekend of a new release, grab some popcorn and see whatever is being served up to us.
Previews and Special Events are all the rage, the latest of which, a screening of Mike Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky accompanied by a live-by-satellite director Q&A, is showing at the Cameo on Wednesday 16 April.
Not that I’m complaining. If a film is good then I want to see it as early as possible, beating the crowds and having something else to talk about at work the next day. And this one should be something worth talking about.
Baring the hallmarks of many Mike Leigh films – actors are left to improvise scenes, only being told as much about the script as they need to know – it stars Sally Hawkins as a North London teacher who is said to appear in every frame of the film.
According to the blurb, compared to Leigh’s earlier efforts, such as the superb Naked and Life is Sweet, Happy-Go-Lucky, “presents a calmer, more optimistic take on contemporary Britain, where individualism and the pursuit of happiness define the lives of a generation, but where old-fashioned notions of community and selflessness still exist”. Here’s a clip of Ms Hawkins being individual:
As noted by Peter Bradshaw in the Guardian, the crowd at the Berlin Film Festival “adored” the film for “its sweet-natured comedy and fun”, something we don’t get enough of at the cinema these days.
Tickets for the Special Event (gotta use capitals) are now on sale from the Cameo Box Office.