Cinema Unbound: A Matter of Life and Death

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BBFC RatingCinema Unbound: A Matter of Life and Death

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GenreDrama, Romance
Director(s)Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
Writer(s)Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
Running Time1HR 44MINS
SeasonCinema Unbound - The Creative Worlds of Powell and Pressburger

Starring David Niven as an air force pilot who is summoned to heaven after surviving a crash, A Matter of Life and Death is not only one of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s best films, but one of the greatest British films ever made.

Peter Carter (Niven) is flying back to Britain in a damaged plane after a bombing raid when, facing inevitable death, he radios his final position to an American radio operator (Kim Hunter), with whom he immediately falls in love. However, when he later staggers from the sea very much alive, Carter is confronted by an emissary from heaven (Marius Goring) who informs him that his survival is due to a clerical error, and he must report to heaven right away. A celestial court then convenes to determine whether Carter is allowed a second chance at life and love. 

An utterly unique classic, A Matter of Life and Death is a film bursting with sensational flourishes and highlights Powell and Pressburger’s knack for layering breathtaking visual tricks on top of timeless themes.

The 6.00pm screening on Wed 18 Oct will be introduced by Dr. Sian Barber, Film Studies at Queen's University, Belfast.

Part of Cinema Unbound: The Creative Worlds of Powell and Pressburger. With support of the BFI Film Audience Network, awarding funds from the National Lottery in order to bring this project to more audiences across the UK. This screening is also part of the Belfast International Arts Festival, which takes place throughout Belfast from 12 October to 5 November.


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