Upcoming event: UNLEASHED!

16 Nov

Who let the dogs out – at Genesis cinema? For our last event of the year, PASSENGERFILMS is hosting an evening of films and discussion around the violence of domestication, animal uprising, and types of nature muzzled and unmuzzled, ruled and overruled.

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Sylwia Gawel’s Polish animation Udomowienie / Domestication (2015) shows a particular dependence between a man and the exotic reptiles he owns. In a flat cluttered with aquariums, he attentively looks after his animals, yet strictly controls their behavior – until a small caiman he brings home disturbs this harmony forever. Brad McGann’s notorious short Possum (1997) places an element of the wild within the home, with a feral girl imitating the noises of wild animals, viciously biting family members, and chained to her bed at night – until her brother sets her loose. Whilst the father, a trapper, attempts to master the land, he is unable to control his daughter, an “animal” that is disrupting the family home.

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Our feature film is White God (2014). Directed by Kornél Mundruczó, this searing political fable follows the mixed-breed dog Hagen and his 13 year old guardian Lili when, due to a harsh “mongrel” fine imposed by the Hungarian government, Hagen is abandoned and subsequently leads a canine revolt across the city against his human subjugators. From the introduction of an unruly alligator to the regulated spaces of a private animal collection, to the myths of colonization on the New Zealand frontier, to the “beastly spaces” of Budapest streets overrun by a pack of four-legged rebels (in all live-action dog acting), these films explore the many ways human mastery is unsettled – and unsettling.wg2

The films will be followed by a panel discussion in the Genesis bar with Anat Pick, Phil Howell, and Jennifer Adlem. Dr. Anat Pick is Senior Lecturer in Film Studies at Queen Mary, University of London, editor of Screening Nature: Cinema Beyond the Human (2013), and author of Creaturely Poetics: Animality and Vulnerability in Literature and Film(2011), on the more-than-human dimensions of ethics and the marking of vulnerability across species boundaries; her latest book, Maureen (2016), is a creative nonfiction that explores the commonalities between institutionalized humans and institutionalized animals. Dr. Philip Howell is Senior Lecturer in Geography at Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge, specializing in geographies of regulating gender and sexuality in the city, as well as the ‘animal turn’ in human geography and literary geography. He’s the author of At Home and Astray: The Domestic Dog in Victorian Britain (2015), which explores historical transformations in the role of the dog in bourgeois homes and the mean streets of London – and how dogs were increasingly policed out of public space. The historian Jennifer Adlem is completing a PhD at Queen Mary, University of London, on canine psychopathology and types of madness and love in the bond between human and dog.

TUESDAY 29 NOVEMBER / DOORS 6:30PM, START 7PM/ GENESIS CINEMA, 93-95 MILE END RD, E1 4UJ / £5 TICKETS (info coming soon)

Venue information here.

Facebook event here.

 

Upcoming Event: HERITAGE FIGHT

1 Jun

Join us for an evening of film and discussion in an exploration of protest, conservation and environmental values in our screening of award-winning documentary HERITAGE FIGHT (2012).

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Directed by Eugénie Dumont, HERITAGE FIGHT follows the citizens and traditional owners (the Goolarabooloo) of lands in a small town in Australia’s last great wilderness. The film documents their daily struggle against the imminent danger of a liquified natural gas plant. HERITAGE FIGHT questions and listens. It draws on the perspectives of scientists, activists, politicians and businessmen, all determined to fight and protect what is priceless to them and all driven by a remarkable collective consciousness.

The screening will be followed by a panel discussion / Q&A featuring Prof. Jenny Pickerill (Professor in Environmental Geography at University of Sheffield and author of ‘Cyberprotest: Environmental Activism Online’), Dr. Adam Barker (Geography Teaching Fellow at University of Leicester and author of forthcoming ‘Settling: Invasion, Space-Making, and the Northern Bloc of Settler Colonialism’) and Dr. Peter Kilroy (British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Film Studies/ Menzies Centre for Australian Studies at King’s College, London. His current project explores the proliferation of documentary films made by, about or in collaboration with Australia’s ‘other’ Indigenous minority, Torres Strait Islanders).

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Monday 6th June / 6:30pm Doors / 7:00pm Start / The Book Club, 100 – 106 Leonard Street, London, EC2A 4RH /£5 Tickets

Buy tickets here.

Venue information here. 

Facebook event here.

Upcoming Event: Feminist Geographies – Girls and the Night City

18 May

Join us for an exciting evening of film and discussion exploring gendered power within the city at night. The event questions how a hunger for freedom can be threatened by spectres of danger for women in the dark city, provoking fear and vulnerability.

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Screening short ‘J’ai Faim, J’ai Froid’ (1984) from pioneering director Chantal Akerman, the film follows two runaway girls with an insatiable appetite attempting to navigate the Parisian night streets. Followed by the intoxicating debut feature from director Ana Lily Amirpour, ‘A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night’ (2014). Set against an ethereal soundtrack, a young chador-cloaked vampire skateboards through ‘Bad City’, a place that reeks of death and hopelessness, preying on its unsavoury inhabitants. The films bring to light the tense gendered space where fear meets desire, giving an ambivalent sense of women reclaiming the night.

The event will include short talks and a panel discussion involving Prof Gillian Rose (author of the acclaimed ‘Feminism & Geography: The Limits of Geographical Knowledge’, Professor of Cultural Geography, Open University), Dr Saaed Zeydabadi-Nejad (author of ‘Politics of Iranian Cinema: Films and Society in the Islamic Republic of Iran’, Senior Teaching Fellow, Centre for Media Studies at SOAS), Dr Sarah Marie Hall (Lecturer and specialist in the intersection of feminist, economic and social geography at University of Manchester) and Sophie Mayer (author of ‘Political Animals: The New Feminist Cinema’, and feminist film activist).

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Tuesday 31st May / 6:00pm / Genesis Cinema, 93-5 Mile End Road, London E1 4UJ / £5 entry

Venue information can be found here.

The facebook event can be found here.

Guest post: Gavin Bridge on ‘Who mines sulphur anymore?’

18 May

Over at followthethings.com, Gavin Bridge shares his thoughts from our February event, Toxic Materialities, about the film ‘Where Heaven Meets Hell’.

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Passengerfilms – a London-based ‘car crash of cinema and geography’ – invited Ian to suggest a film and panel discussants for a screening in February this year. He chose Sasha Friedlander’s documentary Where Heaven meets Hellin which audiences get to know four men who mine sulphur from inside a live volcano in Indonesia. A new followthethings.com page was published on the film and he recommended it again as part of the film programme for the Museum of Contemporary Commodities in Exeter. The screening is tonight. Is all sulphur mined in volcanoes? NO! Says London panellist Prof Gavin Bridgein this guest post. It is ‘mined’ in perhaps even more surprising places…

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Where Heaven Meets Hell conveys the aspirations, social relations and hard physical labour of a group of men who earn their living by prying chunks of sulphur free from the mouth of an Indonesian volcano…

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The Monster that ‘Google’ Created: some thoughts on EX MACHINA (2015)

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Here are the superb thoughts of Pip Thornton on our Being Human // Human Being event.

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Earlier this week I curated and co-hosted Passengerfilms’ latest event in London (quite aptly within a stone’s throw of Silicon Roundabout). Called BEING HUMAN // HUMAN BEING, the event featured a screening and discussion of Alex Garland’s 2015 film Ex Machina. The fact that we sold out before we even started advertising I think goes to show not only what an awesome panel we had in Lee MacKinnon, John Danaher and Oli Mould, but that the possibilities, ethics and potential dangers of Artificial Intelligence really are at the forefront not only of academic debate, but also of a wider public imagination.

Ex Machina is such an incredibly rich and provocative film that it was impossible to cover everything in one short night, so I wanted to write a few thoughts down here, some of which were raised on the night, but others for which there was no…

View original post 1,215 more words

Being Human // Human Being – Ex Machina

14 Mar

Join us for an event which seeks to explore what it means to be human, or simply alive, in a world in which the digitally processed virtual is increasingly experienced in the actualities of everyday life.

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Curated and hosted by digital geographies PhD students Mike Duggan and Pip Thornton, and featuring Alex Garland’s sci-fi thriller EX MACHINA (2015), the event aims to question binary definitions of virtual/real, nature/culture and human/non-human, engaging with critical debates around artificial intelligence (AI), law & ethics, gender, techno-capitalism and virtual geographies, while challenging the representations of these subjects in the film and other media.

Ex-Machina Trailer

The event will include short talks and a panel discussion involving Dr. John Danaher, lecturer in Law at the National University of Ireland, Galway and author of the blog Philosophical Disquisitions, Lee MacKinnon, lecturer in the Theory and History of Photography at Arts University Bournemouth, whose book chapter Love’s Algorithm: The perfect parts for my machine, was recently published in Algorithmic Life: Calculative Devices in the Age of Big Data (2015) and Dr. Oli Mould, lecturer in Human Geography at Royal Holloway, University of London, published film critic and author of taCity blog.

Entry just £5.00, join the waitlist here to receive purchasing information: 

TICKET INFORMATION

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Upcoming Event: TOXIC MATERIALITIES – Where Heaven Meets Hell

16 Feb

Join us for a screening of Sasha Friedlander’s stunning film ‘Where Heaven Meets Hell’ (2012), and an exploration of toxic materialities presented by Passengerfilms in collaboration with followthethings.com

 

Indonesia’s stunningly beautiful Kawah Ijen volcano, a popular tourist spot, belches smoke hundreds of feet into the air. Through the smoke tourists can see men carrying heavy baskets on their shoulders. These contain blocks of bright yellow sulphur chipped from the volcano’s smouldering slopes, destined to help make a range of everyday stuff from matches and fertilizer to cosmetics and sugar. Sulphur dioxide gas is thick in the air. It corrodes the miners’ lungs and the filmmaker’s cameras. Winner of multiple documentary film awards, Where Heaven Meets Hell provides not only a vivid insight into the harsh industrial landscapes of resource extraction but also prompts wider questions about the toxic materialities of our modern consumer cultures.

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The film screening will be followed by a panel discussion and Q&A chaired by Prof. Phil Crang (Royal Holloway University) with Dr Ian Cook (Exeter University, CEO of followthethings.com), Prof. Gavin Bridge (Durham University, a resource expert and co-author of Oil, 2013), Dr Jennifer Gabrys (Goldsmiths, author of Digital Rubbish 2011 and co-editor of Accumulation: the Material Politics of Plastic, 2013), and Andrew Hickman and Andy Whitmore from the London Mining Network (http:// londonminingnetwork.org).

Monday 29th February / 6:30pm / The Water Poet, 9-11 Folgate Street, London E1 6BX / £5 entry

Venue Website: The Water Poet

Facebook Event: here