In our Made in Britain special, Jonathan Glazer talks Scarlet Johansson in Scotland, alien cinema and Under the Skin, plus David Mackenzie on Starred Up, Richard Ayoade on The Double, Mark Cousins on A Story of Children and Film, and super-producer Jeremy Thomas on an epic career in cinema.
Jonathan Glazer’s extraordinary adaptation of Michel Faber’s novel Under the Skin is a collision between the surreal and the very real, as an extraterrestrial Scarlett Johansson tours the Scottish countryside in search of prey. By Jonathan Romney.
Between the walls
David Mackenzie’s savage prison drama Starred Up, which tells the story of a violent young offender who is transferred to the same prison wing as his estranged father, represents a high point in the versatile career of one of Britain’s most undervalued directors. By Trevor Johnston.
Age of innocence
Cinema’s fascination with childhood is as old as the medium itself, enabling filmmakers to depart from conventional modes of storytelling as they exploit an adult awareness to reflect the undoubted otherness of youthful experience. By Pasquale Iannone.
Plus: Songs of freedom
Mark Cousins seized the chance to take liberties with form in his essay film A Story of Children and Film, an examination of the notion that kids’ movies are all about freedom. Interview by Pasquale Iannone.
Me, myself and him
A man is haunted by his doppelganger in Richard Ayoade’s Submarine follow-up, The Double, which sees the director expand his filmic vocabulary in a black comedy of anxiety and urban paranoia, loosely adapted from Dostoevsky’s novella. By David Thompson.
The S&S Interview: Jeremy Thomas, part one
The making of a super-producer In a career spanning more than 40 years, Jeremy Thomas has been the engine behind an extraordinarily diverse range of films, from Skolimowski’s The Shout to Bertolucci’s The Last Emperor to Jarmusch’s Only Lovers Left Alive. The son of Doctor in the House director Ralph Thomas and the nephew of Gerald Thomas, the man behind the Carry On… films, Jeremy grew up at the heart of the British film scene of the 1950s and 60s, cutting his teeth on work with Ken Loach and Ray Harryhausen. Here, he reminisces about his childhood hanging out with Sid James, making films at Dirk Bogarde’s house and going ten-pin bowling with John Hurt. Interview by Nick James.
Films of the month:
The Past; The Robber Salvo; The Unknown Known: The Rules and Memos of Donald Rumsfeld
plus reviews of About Last Night; Back to Front: Peter Gabriel Live Back to the Garden; BAFTA Shorts 2014; Betsy & Leonard Bette Bourne; It: Goes with the Shoes; The Borderlands; The Double; 8 Minutes; Idle Endless Love; The Fold; G.B.F.; Half of a Yellow Sun; Highway Honour; I Declare War; The Legend of Hercules; The Lego Movie; A Long Way Down; The Machine; The Monuments Men; Mr. Peabody and Sherman; My Stuff/Tavarataivas; Need for Speed; Paranoia; Plot for Peace; RoboCop; The Rocket; The Stag; Starred Up; A Story of Children and Film; Suzanne Svengali; Tinker Bell and the Pirate Fairy; Tom at the Farm; Under the Skin; Unforgiven Visitors; Winter’s Tale; The Zero Theorem