On Screen

Pop Fiction @ The Barbican

Playfortoday Ok, they’ve not made a good record for as long as I can remember, but Saint Etienne have their use – like curating this new pop film season at The Barbican in London.

The selections, over three dates, are a mix of lost films and obscure music-based dramas missing presumed lost – including a Play For Today based on the Two Tone movement and one starring Ray Davies.

Here’s what’s on in full:

Ladies and Gentlemen…The Fabulous Stains
Rarely seen in this country, The Fabulous Stains follows a fictitious punk girl group (featuring Diane Lane and Laura Dern) touring with a washed up Glam band and an up and coming English punk group – Sex Pistols Paul Cook and Steve Jones, The Clash’s Paul Simonon and Ray Winstone.
The film was acknowledged by the likes of Bikini Kill as an influence on the Riot Grrl scene.
US 1980 Dir. Lou Adler 87 min.

Three Minute Heroes
BBC Play For Today
Five Midlands kids on the dole play in a 2 Tone band.
UK 1982 60min.

Reprising her Cathy Come Home/Poor Cow role, Carol White is a single mum living on a south London estate whose life changes when she meets rock star Mike Preston (Roy Harper) on Brighton beach. Made was chosen, along with Clockwork Orange, to represent Britain at the 1972 Venice Film Festival.
UK 1972 Dir. John McKenzie 101 min.

The Long Distance Piano Player
Play For Today
Ray Davies is bullied by his manager (Norman Rossington) into playing a 48 hour piano marathon in a seaside town. Includes the otherwise unheard Kinks songs Marathon and Got To Be Free.
UK 1971 Dir. Philip Saville 62 mins

Jumping Bean Bag
Play for Today
This 1976 Play For Today has never been reshown until now, its 30th anniversary. Public school Glam band Slag Bag dream of being "as big as the Bay City Rollers". With singer Ozzie Freemantle (David ‘Ford Prefect’ Dixon) and drummer Snare (Denis Lawson) and songs like Snake Madness, they debut at an end-of-year school play, are expelled, then rise swiftly to the top only for disaster to strike. Among their loyal fans is a young Linda Robson.
UK 1976 Dir. Alan Cooke 69 mins

Toyah Willcox and Phil Daniels star as kids who break into a TV studio only to be caught by Noel Edmonds.
UK 1976 30 mins

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One Comment

  1. Richard Karström

    The Fabulous Stains…
    Now there’s a movie I’d like to see. Might be crap but it’s really hard to find.

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