Who Killed British Cinema?

Who Killed British Cinema? ★★★

OK as a film this may look and feel rather like one of those little reports on Watchdog into a company you think you know and believe to be reliable only to find out just how rotten to the core it actually is, but the corruption that Robin Dutta and Vinod Mahindru's film exposes is a story that needs to be told.

So we're caught in a tricky juxtaposition here; Who Killed British Cinema? is an absolute must-watch for anyone interested in the (British) film industry, and a real eye-opener to the white elephant nature of British studios and the broken promises and sell-outs, politics and poor funding, mismanagement and incompetence, lack of ambition or vision, and a deep-seated aversion to risk that has brought us here. Yet its format of talking heads (however intelligent and revealing they are - and they are, I mean we're talking about the likes of Ken Loach, Stephen Frears, Ben Kingsley, Alan Parker, Jonathan Gems and Mike Hodges to name but a few*) makes for a less than satisfying cinematic experience. It's naturally info heavy which makes for a dense and dry experience that no amount of half-hearted animated interludes can enliven.

I believe that, much like 100 Films and a Funeral, the film (and book) that depicted the demise of Polygram, sacrificed at the altar of the American corporations, Who Killed British Cinema? is also a book too and maybe this information is better relayed on the printed page rather than on the screen. You can see for yourself, gratis, if you have Amazon Prime. Again, for British film buffs, it's a fascinating peek into an infuriating situation that can be best described as cultural suicide or, as Loach puts it, 'cultural colonisation' from the US.

*There's also John Woodward, the former CEO of the UK Film Council, who comes off as a right prickly, pugnacious prat.

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