A FREE film festival
in Godalming from the
15th - 19th August 2017

Film Notes for the 2017 Festival

Here are some notes about the films we are screening this year. For those films that were shown as part of the Godalming Film Society's programmes over the years, there are links to the extensive notes and responses from the GFS members.

Intouchables

France - 2011 - 15

Intouchables

Directors: Olivier Nakache, Eric Toledo
Cast: Francois Chuzet, Omar Sy
Rating: 15
Length: 112m

Synopsis: A feel-good saga of an ultra-wealthy quadriplegic and the petty criminal who becomes his caretaker.

Read the film notes and responses from the Godalming Film Society.

The Red Balloon (Le ballon rouge)

France - 1956 - U

The Red Balloon

Director: Albert Lamorisse
Cast: Pascal Lamorisse, Sabine Lamorisse, Georges Sellier
Rating: U
Length: 34m

Synopsis: A red balloon with a life of its own follows a little boy around the streets of Paris.

Chinatown

USA - 1974 - 15

Chinatown

Director: Roman Polanski
Cast: Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, Diane Ladd, John Huston, Perry Lopez
Rating: 15
Length: 130m

Synopsis: Jack Nicholson has the role of Jake Gittes, the L.A. private investigator who sticks his nose into a corrupt conspiracy in the state's Department of Water and Power. The plan is to create a drought in California, sending farmland prices into a dustbowl slump, so that it can be bought cheap and made the site of a colossal new dam, to be sold back to the taxpayer at a huge profit.

Read the film notes and responses from the Godalming Film Society.

Zootropolis

USA - 2016 - PG

Zootropolis

Directors: Byron Howard, Rich Moore
Cast: Voices of Ginnifer Goodwin, Jason Bateman, Idris Elba
Rating: PG
Length: 108m

Won an Oscar in 2017 for Best Animated Feature Film of the Year

Synopsis: In a city of anthropomorphic animals, a rookie bunny cop and a cynical con artist fox must work together to uncover a conspiracy.

Departures

Japan - 2008 - 12A

Departures

Director: Yojiro Takita
Cast: Kazuko Yoshiyuki, Kimiko Yo, Masahiro Motoki, Ryoko Hirosue, Tsutomu Yamazaki
Rating: 12A
Length: 130m

Oscar winner for Best Foreign Language Film 2009

Synopsis: Daigo is a 36 year old cellist who returns to his home town where he applies for a job at what he thinks is a travel agency. It turns out to be a small firm specialising in the journey 'to the world from which no traveller returns'.

Read the film notes and responses from the Godalming Film Society.

Hugo

USA - 2011 - U

Hugo

Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Asa Butterfield, Chloe Grace Moretz, Christopher Lee
Rating: U
Length: 126m

Won 5 Oscars in 2012

Synopsis: Hugo is an orphan boy living in the walls of a train station in 1930s Paris. He learned to fix clocks and other gadgets from his father and uncle which he puts to use keeping the train station clocks running. The only thing that he has left that connects him to his dead father is an automaton (mechanical man) that doesn't work without a special key. Hugo needs to find the key to unlock the secret he believes it contains. On his adventures, he meets George Melies, a shopkeeper, who works in the train station, and his adventure-seeking god-daughter. Hugo finds that they have a surprising connection to his father and the automaton, and he discovers it unlocks some memories the old man has buried inside regarding his past.

The Straight Story

USA - 1999 - U

The Straight Story

Director: David Lynch
Cast: Richard Farnsworth, Sissy Spacek, Jane Galloway Heitz
Rating: U
Length: 107m

Synopsis: 73 year old Alvin Straight undertakes a journey, on a riding lawn mower, from Iowa to Wisconsin to mend his relationship with his ill brother.

Way Out West

USA - 1937 - U

Way Out West

Director: James W. Horne
Cast: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Sharon Lynn
Rating: U
Length: 64m

Synopsis: Stan and Ollie are charged with delivering the deed to a valuable gold mine to the daughter of a dead prospector. However, they reckon without the machinations of her evil guardian Mickey Finn who is determined to have the gold mine for himself and his saloon singer wife Lola.

West Side Story

USA - 1961 - PG

West Side Story

Directors: Jerome Robbins, Robert Wise
Cast: Natalie Wood, George Chakiris, Richard Beymer, Rita Moreno
Rating: PG
Length: 152m (there will be an intermission)

Won 10 Oscars in 1962

Synopsis: West Side Story is the award-winning adaptation of "Romeo and Juliet". The feuding families become two warning New York City gangs: the white Jets, led by Riff, and the Puerto Rican Sharks, led by Bernardo. When Riff's best friend (and former Jet) Tony and Bernardo's younger sister Maria meet at a dance, no one can do anything to stop their love. They begin meeting in secret and plan to run away. Then the Sharks and the Jets plan a rumble under the highway – whoever wins gains control of the streets. Maria sends Tony to stop it, hoping it can end the violence. It goes terribly wrong and before the lovers know what has happened, tragedy strikes and doesn't stop until the climatic and heartbreaking ending.

Leon

France - 1994 - 18

Leon

Director: Luc Besson
Cast: Jean Reno, Gary Oldman, Natalie Portman
Rating: 18
Length: 130m

Synopsis: After her father, mother, older sister and little brother are killed by her father's employers, Matilda, the 12-year-old daughter of an abject drug dealer, is forced to take refuge in the apartment of a professional hitman who, at her request, teaches her the methods of his job so she can take her revenge on the corrupt DEA agent who ruined her life by killing her beloved brother.