Screwball Comedy Season @ BFI Preview + Win Tickets

BFI Southbank
Jan 1 – 31, 2013

January 2013 see’s the BFI admiring the irrepressibly gag-greased explorations of America’s great divides, the classic screwball comedies of the 30s and 40s.

Even further back to notably, Lubitsch’s gorgeously immoral and sexy Trouble in Paradise (1932), but 1934 is usually thought the first year of screwball, with the release of It Happened One Night and Twentieth Century. For the next ten years Hollywood produced a dazzling succession of screwball comedies. This season screens 21 of them (plus a 1952 coda in Hawks’ Monkey Business), including many familiar titles such as The Philadelphia Story and Bringing Up Baby.

The finest screwball comedies get an edge and urgency from their situation in the aftermath of the Great Depression.

The personal can’t help being political in these stories across wealth divides, often splicing a millionaire with a working girl or working guy. For all the mayhem, these films engage seriously with contemporary America, these are romantic stories that also take on the big issues of the time.

They are stories, too, that get a buzz from the gender inequality of the day; women are up against it in social terms, but not so far under the patriarchal thumb that they can’t fight it out. Screwball women are seldom ladylike. They often talk as fast as Groucho Marx, and the films are alive with fresh imaginations of adult relationships under a new banner of equality. Love feels like a moral challenge in these films as well as a call to trust your feelings.

For more information and to book tickets visit the BFI website here.


We have a pair of tickets to give away!
Winners can pick which film and at which time they would like to attend (Subject to availability).

To count yourself in with a chance of winning, join us on facebook and twitter – then just send us an email with your name, contact details and the answer to this simple question:

Who Directed ‘Mr Deeds Goes to Town?

a) Frank Harper
b) Frank Capra
C) Frank Butcher

Email you answer to Good luck!

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