We are delighted to welcome Carl Davis, composer of the vast score for Napoleon, to our January 15 screening, and Kevin Brownlow, Director of the Restoration, to the January 29 screening.
'Napoleon' is pure cinema, and cinema was designed for sharing. There's something about the way it was shot that makes it like no other. I can't tell you how many people, having seen our restoration, have said: "That was the greatest experience I have ever had in a motion picture theatre." - Kevin Brownlow
Powered along by Carl Davis's invigorating orchestral score, this is a biopic that pairs the grandeur of its subject's work and vision with its own cinematic innovations. You will have read about the triptychs that close the movie but perhaps you've also heard about the flash cuts, superimpositions, multiple exposures and the cameras mounted on horseback. The first act of the film in this Kevin Brownlow restoration contains much of its experimentation and bravado. It follows Napoleon as an alienated schoolboy, and his disastrous return as a young man to his native Corsica. The snowball fight that opens the film, in which Bonaparte and nine friends strategize their way to a crucial victory over 40 of their peers, is a beauty - staged as if were the culmination of a bloody war.
The effect on the viewer of the final act is truly mesmerizing. At the centre of it all, Albert Dieudonné's graven face, beneath that famous hat, surveys his own triumph. It's a monument to patriotism of course, but the work of Gance, of Brownlow and of Davis, will rekindle devotion not to a country but to the cinematic arts.
We present this true epic of cinema (five-hours-forty-minutes which appears to go by in a flash) in two parts, allowing for a lunch break at one of our many local restaurants.
France 1927 Abel Gance / Kevin Brownlow 235m (plus lunch intervals)
11:00 Act1 (113m) - 15m Interval - Act2 (63m)
14:11 Lunch Interval
16:15 Act3 (107m) - 15m Interval - Act4 (49m) - Ends 19:06
Tickets: Film Only - £12.50 (Friends/Students £10)
Film & Food - £22.50 (Friends/Students £20)
Napoleon Bonaparte's celebrated statement about food and warfare - "An army marches on its stomach" - was reportedly said before the Battle of Waterloo. Chicken Marengo was a dish hastily invented by Napoleon's cook from whatever ingredients he could get hold of, following the French leader's narrow victory at the battle of Marengo in 1800. Brasserie Blanc is delighted to offer a Special Lunch Deal of Chicken Marengo and a glass of wine for £10 during the main interval.