News: The best Terminator film is finally being re-released in cinemas – but there’s a catch

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Originally published on The National Student on 20/02/17.

James Cameron’s Terminator 2: Judgement Day, arguably the greatest sequel of all time, is finally making its way back to the big screen – there’s just one problem. 

The re-release in question is in headache-inducing 3D, so if you’re not a fan of the extra dimension, silly glasses or higher price-tag, tough luck it seems. Although there is still reason to believe that the 3D itself might be slightly better quality than the usual low-rent upscaling. 

This isn’t just the classic sci-fi actioner being thrown through a bit of software; James Cameron himself will be overseeing the whole upgrade, with his production company Lighstorm leading the conversion. Working from the original 35mm negative, this new print is being restored in 4K too, so expect a sharper quality image as well as the extra depth to the picture. 

True the conversion’s probably not quite for everyone, but the team did a great job with Avatar which essentially started the whole 3D boom, and the re-release of Titanic in the same medium was met fairly well too. If anyone’s going to add the extra dimension, you can trust Cameron and his crew to get it right. 

Plus, how could you pass up the chance to see one of the finest sci-fi movies ever made on the big screen? Schwarzenegger in his prime, the T-1000 lunging through the screen in all his liquid-metal glory? 

Put it this way: we know where we’ll be come August when this print gets its UK release, courtesy of the fine folks over at Studiocanal. 

Terminator 2: Judgement Day will be back in UK cinemas in 3D from 25th August. 

News: Backyard Cinema returns with a Tarantino-themed immersive experience

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Originally published on The National Student on 16/02/17. 

Ever wanted to watch Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs and Kill Bill in an abandoned chapel? Now’s your chance. 

Labelling themselves as one of London’s most “sought after and alternative cinema experiences”, Backyard Cinema might be one of the city’s oddest ways to watch a film. Much like the yearly Secret Cinema, Backyard are angling for the immersive experience, with themed screenings all throughout the year. 

Located just south of the Southbank in Newington, the cinema itself doesn’t actually go anywhere, but every few months they switch up the themed design to match the ever-changing programme. And this year’s just so happens to be based around American favourite Quentin Tarantino. 

Named ‘The Last Chapel’ and built to look like, you guessed it, a chapel, Backyard Cinema will be screening everything from Tarantino-inspired classics, to the work of the very man himself from 22nd March to the 9th April. 

Kicking things off with his much celebrated debut Reservoir Dogs, the selective showings include everything from David Fincher’s Fight Club to The Lost Boys, Drive, Pulp Fiction (of course) and True Romance, before wrapping things up on closing night with the uber-violent, Tarantino-scripted psycho thriller Natural Born Killers.

Tickets are a little pricey, but that does include a beanbag lounger for a seat so you can bet your lucky stars that it’ll be worth it. 

Backyard Cinema’s ‘The Last Chapel’ season kicks off on 22nd March. More info can be found at the official website.

News: Watch the new trailer for The Revenant

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Originally published on The National Student on 30/09/15. 

Fresh off his Oscar success with Birdman: Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)earlier this year, Mexican maestro Alejandro G. Iñárritu looks to be awards-hungry once again with his latest effortThe Revenant

Following a slew of promo images, the latest (and greatest) trailer for the adventure tale is finally with us, and it’s really quite something. 

Charting the gritty war-path of wounded frontiersman Hugh Glass (Leonardo DiCaprio making another fabled push for the big award) in the early 19th century, The Revenant takes a hefty gang of Hollywood’s finest upcoming talents and looks to be pushing them to their very limit.

After Glass is mauled by a bear in a remote forestland, his weakened body is desecrated by one of his fellow comrades (a very hairy Tom Hardy) and he is effectively left for dead.

Gradually regaining his strength, he sets out for vengeance, looking to make up the distance between him and his betrayers one bloody act at a time. 

This new trailer not only gives us a flavour of the above plot, but also a whole lot more – from some incredible sweeping landscapes to just a hint of what might prove to be some of the most complex and grounded war sequences in recent memory. Returning director of photography Emmanuel Lubezki – back-to-back winner of the Oscar for best cinematography for Birdman and Gravity – looks to truly have outdone himself this time.  

But that’s not to say that the cast don’t make their commitment known as well. DiCaprio and Hardy both look to be on top form as usual, as do the far younger likes of Domhnall Gleeson (About Time) and Will Poulter (The Maze Runner), dishing out finely-tuned performances even in the harsh conditions that they were no doubt subjected to.

Based on the trailer alone, The Revenant definitely looks to be a technical marvel – whether or not it has the goods to deliver on an emotional level too will all be revealed when it’s released here in the UK in the new year. 

It might finally be Leo’s year after all. 

The Revenant is released in the UK on 15th January 2016. Watch the latest trailer below. 

News: Watch environmental devastation in this new clip from How to Change the World

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Originally published on The National Student on 11/09/15. 

Jerry Rothwell’s festival-favourite documentaryHow to Change the World lands in select cinemas today, and we have a clip to celebrate. 

Rothwell’s film centres around the group of protestors who founded the now worldwide Greenpeace movement in the 1970s, following a fight against nuclear arms testing. 

The doc debuted at Sundance earlier this year where it was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize and walked away with the coveted award for editing, then moving on to sweep the Sheffield International Documentary Festival where its creator Rothwell was celebrated with the Sheffield Green Award. 

With this much great buzz surrounding the film, it’s sure to be an eye-opening look at the dangers our world faces. 

Check out a clip below, which offers up a shocking look at an American nuclear weapons test through archive footage. 

How to Change the World (2015), directed by Jerry Rothwell, is distributed in the UK by Picturehouse Entertainment and is in cinemas now. You can read our review here.  

News: Win a place at the BFI Film Academy with Suffragette and GoThinkBig

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Originally published on The National Student on 11/09/15. 

To celebrate the release of the new historical drama Suffragette, O2’s GoThinkBig and the BFI are offering young people a shot at filmmaking success. 

With the BFI London Film Festival very much on the horizon, the search for Britain’s next big filmmaking talent continues with this prestigious competition for young people across the UK. 

If you’re aged between 18 and 24 and have a keen eye for cinema, the BFI and GoThinkBig are offering up a chance to receive professional training from experts working in all areas of the film industry, from directors to writers and beyond. 

Applicants can apply for eight different roles in the project, covering every aspect of film production, and those successful will win a place on one of three crews, each making a short film which will be shown at an exclusive screening of the hotly-anticipated new drama Suffragette during this year’s BFI London Film Festival on 15th October. 

Further details about applying and the competition itself can be found at www.gothinkbig.co.uk/lff

Suffragette, starring Carey Mulligan and Meryl Streep, will take its bow on the opening night of this year’s BFI London Film Festival. 

News: Graduate’s documentary challenges our use of the ‘gay’ word

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Originally published on The National Student on 17/08/15. 

Recent graduate Amy Ashenden took to the streets of Britain and asked people of all backgrounds and sexualities what they think of the word ‘gay’.

After finally finishing her degree at the University of Southampton, freelance journalist Amy decided that she wanted to get stuck into a new project straight away, and on the back of finishing her first documentary Working for Nothing, she decided that another film project was definitely on the cards. 

The topic however, was to be something a little different, following up on something she had been noticing people say for quite a while.

“The phrase ‘that’s so gay’ is common, not only among school children, but I also hear it said often by university students.” says Ashenden.

“I wondered why it is that it’s such a popular, go-to, word to describe something as embarrassing or weak, or just rubbish.”

And so, armed with equipment from SUSUtv, the TV station of her former university, Amy travelled across the South East to uncover why so many people seem to use the word ‘gay’ to mean something derogatory, questioning as many people as she could get her hands on as well as university academics and human rights organisations. 

The results were swiftly edited into her second documentary film The Gay Word, which will be screened at the Bernie Grants Art Centre in Tottenham, London, on 19th September and at The Glorious Art House in Exeter on 17th October. 

Tickets are available for the London show here and for the Exeter show here

You can also watch the trailer for the film below:

News: Student satisfaction still high despite tuition fee increase

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Originally published on The National Student on 13/08/15. 

The 2015 National Student Survey has indicated that students are still satisfied with their university experiences on the whole, despite being forced to pay more for the privilege.

The annual survey, which quizzes students from over 155 institutions at all ends of the country, tests respondents’ opinions on everything from the learning resources they use to the quality of the teaching they are given, rounding off with an overall satisfaction rating at the end.

The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) have reported that Britain’s universities scored an average satisfaction rating of 86% for the year, the exact same rating as they achieved in 2014, painting an image of stability for the nation’s higher education institutions.

Considering that university fees are currently the highest that they have ever been – meaning the pressure to live up to the costs is very much on – this is an impressive score to maintain.

In fact, on many of the survey’s individual sections, there was an overall rise in satisfaction, with attitudes towards personal development and academic support both increasing overall.

The happiest university in the UK is Keele, which has a 95% overall satisfaction rating.

What is slightly worrying however is the absence of any perfect scores from this year’s data. Whereas in previous years many institutions have come away with a 100% satisfaction rating (or something very similar), this year not a single university managed it.

Ultimately though, with satisfaction ratings still averaging out at a healthy and relatively high score, there’s plenty for institutions to celebrate.