The power of love is cinema’s most seductive illusion, making our hearts beat faster and shaping our dreams and longings. Join us at South Hill Park this autumn as we celebrate LOVE with a series of films and talks as part of the nationwide BFI LOVE season, in partnership with Plusnet.
Our headline event is Gone With the Wind: Scarlett’s Women. The most successful film of all time; described by Steven Spielberg as “one of the greatest American movies ever made”, Gone With the Wind has enjoyed huge influence on film-makers, popularity with generations of audiences, and impact on everyday language with phrases such as ‘tomorrow is another day’.
Alongside screenings of this digitally restored masterpiece, Helen Taylor – author of two books on the subject, including the new BFI Film Classic – will discuss how Gone With the Wind set the agenda for over a century’s film representations of slavery and the Civil War. Drawing on new archival material about Vivien Leigh, scholarly and popular culture references, she will discuss its particular appeal to female audiences.
Ron McAllister, Chief Executive of South Hill Park said: “We’re excited to be part of the countrywide BFI LOVE season and it’s a pleasure to welcome back such an informative and entertaining speaker as Professor Helen Taylor. Our historic Recital Room will provide the perfect backdrop to her talk on Gone With the Wind and the live streaming of the event is an important innovation in South Hill Park’s remit to broaden access to artistic and educational work.”
Helen Taylor said: “I’m delighted to be introducing Gone With the Wind at South Hill Park, a great venue for film and a really comfortable space to watch this ‘four-handkerchief’ weepie. Scarlett O’Hara is probably the largest, most complex and transgressive of all female film roles. An intriguing three-way love affair conducted through epic historical crisis and change, the film boasts Hollywood’s finest cinematography, with visual and auditory feasts at every turn. The witty screenplay, amazing costumes and luscious mise-en-scène are of the highest order.”
Heather Stewart, BFI Creative Director said: ‘‘Film can bring love to life more powerfully than any other art form – it is cinema’s most seductive illusion and has transformed the way we see ourselves, and our love lives. Our season is not about sex. We’re getting back to LOVE: embracing the intimacy of the close-up and the anticipation of the much longed-for screen kiss: the very language of cinema itself.”
Other films showing in the LOVE season at South Hill Park are classic romance Brief Encounter and steamy drama From Here to Eternity.