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Free Cinema

The Free Cinema movement films were 'free' in the sense that they were made outside the framework of the film industry, and that their statements were entirely personal. Mostly funded by the BFI's Experimental Film Fund, they featured ordinary, mostly working-class people at work and play, displaying a rare sympathy and respect, and a self-consciously poetic style.

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  • O Dreamland

    Lindsay Anderson’s 12–minute tour of Margate’s Dreamland funfair is immediately notable for its deliberately bleak and unattractive photography and a spare and impressionistic soundtrack. Despite the absence of a commentary, the film distinctly conveys Anderson’s obvious disdain for the modest, i...

  • We Are the Lambeth Boys

    Karel Reisz’s honest and sympathetic depiction of South London teens aimed to challenge the media perception of ‘Teddy Boys’, and would be one of the last films to appear under the Free Cinema banner. One of the key elements of the Free Cinema films was the sympathetic representation of working-c...

  • Together

    Italian director Lorenza Mazzetti borrowed techniques from the neorealist school to conjure this striking study of East End life, one of the original Free Cinema shorts. Following the ambling existence of two deaf-mute dock workers, Mazzetti crafts a poetic depiction of post-war London populated ...

  • Nice Time

    The swirling neon frenzy of Piccadilly Circus has never been better captured than in this innovative short, which presents the London landmark as a bewildering collage of image and sound.