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Star and Shadow presents…


A Free Community Kitchen Film Screening

Adrin Neatrour, 1983/84/85, UK, 61mins, Cert. 18

Wed 10 July // 19:30 / Cinema

Tickets: FREE

For our last Community Kitchen before we take a break in August, we are showing three short films by filmmaker and Star and Shadow volunteer, Adrin Neatrour!


WALL OF DEATH (14 min)

“A short doc about the last travelling fairground Wall of Death. The first of a trilogy of Fairground films made between 1981 and 1985. I always loved the fair. Best memories: being taken to Battersea Park London, as a kid. When I moved to Newcastle in the early 1970’s there was the Hoppings, the world’s largest travelling fair pulled on Town Moor. The rides were never my thing. I always liked the side shows. Dark booths with mysterious people from Tod Browning’s world. When I saw the Wall of Death it blew me away. I had been making ‘8mm’ and ‘s8mm’ films now I wanted to graduate. I knew where I could get hold of a Bolex [London Filmmakers Co-op] and off I went travelling with and shooting the Wall for a couple of months. Finally we laid up in Bournmouth where I shot the on-Wall sequence. Luckily a camera man, Maxim Ford, came down and shot the camera mounted footage. I couldn’t have done that with the Bolex. The Messhams were great, unfortunately little Tommy, a great trick rider, isn’t with us any more. The Wall of death was some gig, what a hit! I could see it wouldn’t last.”



“Boxing Booth is the second of a trilogy of films I made about travelling British fairgrounds in the 1980's. Making the Wall of Death I had come across Ron Taylor’s Boxing Booth on Town Moor. I knew I wanted this to be the subject of the next film. I understood that the Booth wasn’t so much about the professional performers as about the public being drawn in as performers. It seemed an inexorable logic that I couldn’t remain outside the ring. And the events in my life relationships and betrayal directed the film rather than me. Ron Taylor was a delightful and helpful showman, very happy to help me. I don't think that any of his family continued with the business after his death, and at present I don't think there are any travelling Boxing Booths. So it's all real: Boxing Booth started off as a regular documentary about the last fairground Boxing Booth, but slowly inexorably the filmmaker is absorbed into the ring not so much to confront his opponent but himself.”


THE GAFF (25 min)

“The Gaff is the third and last of the trilogy of films I made about British fairgrounds in the 1980's. Making the Wall of Death and Boxing Booth I couldn’t help but be aware that the fairgrounds were not so much an industry, but a world, a domain. The last film I wanted to make in this trilogy would look a little deeper at this strange kingdom of Lords and vassels, haves and have nots, day and night. The Showmen: owners of the attractions, proud independent men and women beholden to no one. The workers: mostly thin wiry men drawn from the sort of underclass that characterises late capitalist society."