The films 2019-20

Here are the details of Cheltenham Film Society’s 2019-20 programme. The titles of each film are linked to the Internet Movie Database, and there is a link to the trailer where one is available. A printable pdf of the programme is also available.

Tuesday 10 September 2019, 19:45

Leave No Trace

Debra Granik |  USA | 2018 | PG | 109 mins  | English

A disturbed army veteran and his teenage daughter hide in the inhospitable woods of the American north-west as he tries to shake off his demons. When they inadvertently come to the notice of the authorities they are forced to keep moving. A beautiful film, with superb performances from Ben Foster and Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie as the father and daughter. Trailer.

Tuesday 24 September 2019, 19:45

The Heiresses + wine & cheese

Marcelo Martinessi | Paraguay | 2018 | 12 | 98 mins | Spanish

A pair of once-wealthy but now impoverished women, who have lived together for many years, must sell off their possessions to make ends meet. But when Chiquita is jailed for fraud, Chela is left to cope alone, and her life opens up to new possibilities. A thoughtful and tender first feature. Trailer.

Tuesday 8 October 2019, 19:45

C’est la vie

Olivier Nakache / Éric Toledano | Belgium/Canada/France | 2018 | 15 | 117 mins | French

This hectic and hilarious comedy details the preparations for an extravagant chateau wedding through the eyes of the master caterer and his team. From the directors of Untouchable, our most highly-rated film, ever. Trailer.

Tuesday 22 October 2019, 19:45

Custody + AGM

Xavier Legrand | France | 2018 | 15 | 93 mins | French

In a courtroom in northern France, Antoine (Denis Ménochet), a hospital security guard, seeks joint custody of his 11-year-old son Julien after the acrimonious break-up of his marriage. But is Antoine the model citizen and caring father he seems? A tense and powerful domestic thriller. Trailer.

Tuesday 29 October 2019, 19:45

Sweet Country

Warwick Thornton | Australia | 2018 | 15 | 113 mins | English/Arrernte

In Northern Territory after World War I, an Aboriginal farmhand shoots a white man in self-defence and is relentlessly pursued. An intense and visually stunning Australian “western”, directed by one of the country’s best indigenous filmmakers. Trailer.

Tuesday 5 November 2019, 19:45


Hirokazu Kore-eda  | Japan | 2018 | 15 | 121 mins | Japanese

A family of petty criminals in Tokyo stumble upon a lost girl and invite her into their home and their shoplifting enterprise. Another wonderfully warm-hearted film from Kore-eda, one of world cinema’s most perceptive observers of familial and class dynamics. Trailer.

Tuesday 19 November 2019, 19:45

Ninotchka (CFS Extra)

Ernst Lubitsch | USA | 1939 | U | 110 mins | English

Dedicated commissar Ninotchka (Greta Garbo) travels from the Soviet Union to Paris to sort out some backsliding comrades. While there, she proves reluctantly susceptible to the Western way of life and love. A delightful early romantic comedy, co-written by Billy Wilder. Trailer.

Tuesday 3 December 2019, 19:45

New Film One

This season we have decided to leave two empty slots in the initial programme. This will allow us to include new films that are released too late for inclusion in the brochure. Feel free to make your own suggestions.

Tuesday 10 December 2019, 19:45

Wajib + wine & cheese

Annemarie Jacir | Palestine | 2017 | 15 | 96 mins | Arabic

A father travels around present-day Nazareth delivering invitations for his daughter’s wedding. With him is his radical son, newly arrived from Europe, and they clash constantly. The actors, Mohammed and Saleh Bakri, are father and son in real life. A warm-hearted, funny film about Palestine away from the headlines.

Tuesday 7 January 2020, 19:45

Happy As Lazzaro

Alice Rohrwacher | Italy | 2018 | 12 | 128 mins | Italian

An extraordinary and evocative cinematic puzzle, blending realism and something more magical. On a feudal estate in Italy, peasant workers struggle to survive. Then Lazzaro (Adriano Tardiolo), a teenage boy, has an accident, waking up to find everything has changed. Trailer.

Tuesday 21 January 2020, 19:45

Dr Strangelove (CFS Extra)

Stanley Kubrick | UK | 1964 | PG | 95 mins | English

Subtitled “How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb”, Dr Strangelove is recognised as one of the greatest cinematic satires. Starring Peter Sellers in three roles, including that of the ex-Nazi Strangelove himself, it still frightens and amuses in equal measure. Trailer.

Tuesday 4 February 2020, 19:45


Nadine Labaki | Lebanon | 2018 | 15 | 126 mins | Arabic/Amharic

Set in Beirut, Capernaüm tells the story of 12-year-old Zain (Zain al Rafeea) as he escapes his chaotic home and makes a life in a shanty town with an Ethiopian immigrant and her baby. An astonishing piece of neo-realist cinema, using a non-professional cast: Zain was a Syrian refugee found in the slums. Trailer.

Tuesday 18 February 2020, 19:45


Andrzej Jakimowski | Poland | 2012 | (no certificate) | 105 mins | English/French/Portuguese/German

This poetic film seems not to have had a previous British release. A teacher (British actor Edward Hogg) at a school for the blind in Portugal refuses to use a cane and instead helps his students find their way by sound and echoes. This leads to conflict and a hint of romance.

Tuesday 25 February 2020, 19:45


Ali Abbasi | Sweden | 2018 | 15 | 110 mins | Swedish

We like to have at least one bizarre film each year: this is it. Tina, a border guard, is an unusual-looking woman who has a sense of smell so acute that she can instantly sniff out criminals. One day she meets a man who looks like her, and a relationship develops. After that, things become really strange. Trailer.

Tuesday 10 March 2020, 19:45

Hail, Caesar! (CFS Extra)

Joel & Ethan Coen | USA | 2016 | 12 | 106 mins | English

In the golden years of Hollywood, leading man Baird Whitlock (George Clooney), shooting a Biblical epic, falls into the hands of a group of dedicated Communists, with highly entertaining results. Also starring Josh Brolin, Ralph Fiennes, Tilda Swinton and Scarlett Johansson. Trailer.

Tuesday 24 March 2020, 19:45

Tehran Taboo

Ali Soozandeh | Germany/Austria | 2018 | 15 | 96 mins | Farsi

To create a film about the seamy side of life in Iran, director Soozandeh, in exile in Germany, has turned to rotoscope animation. Four young people seek happiness, or simple survival, in a land of corrupt judges, hypocritical mullahs, and an ever-present morality police. The animation is bold and vivid and the storytelling startling. Trailer.

Tuesday 21 April, 19:45

New Film Two

The second of the two empty slots in the initial programme. This will allow us to include new films that are released too late for inclusion in the brochure. Feel free to make your own suggestions.

Tuesday 28 April, 19:45

Woman At War + wine & cheese

Benedikt Erlingsson | Iceland | 2018 | 12 | 101 mins | Icelandic

Halla, a middle-aged choirmistress, turns to environmental activism and starts a war on her local aluminium plant. Then a letter arrives, which promises to fulfil a long-held dream, but it also complicates her struggle. A clever Nordic comedy that is also an adventure story. Trailer.