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This site lists films and events from the 2016 BFI London Film Festival. The festival programme for 2017 will be announced later this year.
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Films in Dare

In-your-face, up-front and arresting: films that take you out of your comfort zone.

Dare gala

  • The Handmaiden

    The Handmaiden

    Park Chan-wook (Old Boy, Stoker) channels Sarah Waters’ novel Fingersmith, to create a sumptuous twisty psychological thriller, full of erotic intrigue.


  • Apprentice


    A prison guard finds himself drawn to the gallows when the hangman needs a new apprentice.

  • By the Time It Gets Dark

    By the Time It Gets Dark

    Thai filmmaker Anocha Suwichakornpong (Mundane History) returns with a mesmerising and innovative treatise on memory, politics and cinema.

  • Christine


    Rebecca Hall gives a career-best performance depicting troubled life and very public death of Florida anchorwoman Christine Chubbuck, who committed suicide live on air in the summer of 1974.

  • Dearest Sister

    Dearest Sister

    A rich woman in Laos finds that her encroaching blindness gives her strange and frightening visions, in this bold drama from emerging talent Mattie Do.

  • The Death of Louis XIV

    The Death of Louis XIV

    The last days of the Sun King, evoked with sombre beauty by Albert Serra. The legendary Jean-Pierre Léaud brings ineffable presence to the title role.

  • Hema Hema: Sing Me A Song While I Wait

    Hema Hema: Sing Me A Song While I Wait

    A Bhutanese spiritual getaway shows that anonymity can bring out the strangest of impulses, as masked campers go wild in the jungle, in this latest from the director of The Cup.

  • Junoon


    Shashi Kapoor stars as a man obsessed with a young Anglo-Indian woman in Shyam Benegal's classic drama set during the Indian Mutiny.

  • King Cobra

    King Cobra

    From the director of 2015 BFI Flare opener I Am Michael comes a scandalous true crime story set in the LA gay porn scene.

  • La noche

    La noche

    Gritty journey through the sexual underbelly of Buenos Aires, with graphic depictions of the highs and lows in one man’s quest for intimacy.

  • On the Milky Road

    On the Milky Road

    Emir Kusturica’s latest film is a folkloric tale of doomed love set in the aftermath of a civil war.

  • Ovarian Psycos

    Ovarian Psycos

    Meet the Ovarian Psycos: an East L.A bold and unapologetic Riot-Grrrl-meets-Zapatista bike brigade of women of colour.

  • Personal Shopper

    Personal Shopper

    Kristen Stewart continues to impress in this enigmatic fashionista ghost story from acclaimed director Olivier Assayas.

  • Planetarium


    Natalie Portman and bright newcomer Lily-Rose Depp star as two psychic sisters in this visually dazzling and stylistically bold drama set in 1930s Paris.

  • Private Property

    Private Property

    Warren Oates delivers his first great screen performance in this low-budget gem, unseen for decades - a major rediscovery for noir and crime fans.

  • The Rehearsal

    The Rehearsal

    Alison Maclean (Jesus’ Son and Crush) works from Eleanor Catton’s debut novel to deliver an intimate film about New Zealand drama students struggling to juggle life and coursework.

  • Scarred Hearts

    Scarred Hearts

    Radu Jude's portrait of a young writer confined to a Romanian sanatorium in the late 1930s is a poignant triumph.

  • The Small World of Sammy Lee

    The Small World of Sammy Lee

    Seedy Soho strip-club compere Sammy (Anthony Newley) races to escape the heavies who hunt him in this gritty, engrossing 1960s London thriller.

  • Spaceship


    British teen cinema gets an injection of hallucinogenic imagination, plus a few unicorns and aliens, in Alex Taylor’s debut feature Spaceship.

  • Staying Vertical

    Staying Vertical

    French provocateur Alain Guiraudie (Stranger by the Lake) returns with this surprising tale of fathers, father-figures, shepherds, wolves and sexuality.

  • This Is Colour

    This Is Colour

    Eclectic and enchanting colour shorts from archives worldwide: the rare, the restored and the merely ravishing.

  • The Untamed

    The Untamed

    Amat Escalante follows up his acclaimed Cannes winner Heli with an arresting social drama-cum-sci-fi enigma that defies categorisation.

  • Wild


    Girl meets wolf. A provocative love story of revolutionary fantasy.

  • Wolf and Sheep

    Wolf and Sheep

    A gently humorous and quietly beguiling portrait of the rituals and traditions of a remote Afghan community, with standout performances from a non-professional cast.

  • The Worthy

    The Worthy

    In a dystopian Arab world, a small group of survivors are infiltrated by two visitors, sparking a deadly game where only one shall be chosen worthy.

  • Zoology


    Middle-aged Natasha grows a tail and falls in love in Ivan Tverdovsky’s absurd tale of contemporary Russia.

Short films programme

  • Teen Creeps

    Teen Creeps

    A selection of films that show how coming of age can be a scary experience.

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