Momma Don't Allow
Dance • 21m
Directed by Karel Reisz & Tony Richardson • Documentary • With Chris Barber, Monty Sunshine, Pat Halcox, Ron Bowden • 1956 • 22 minutes
This lively Free Cinema short captures a night out at the Wood Green Jazz Club, where teenagers jive to trad jazz. Funded by the BFI Experimental Film Fund, it was filmed over the course of nine Saturdays by Karel Reisz, then programmer of the National Film Theatre, and a young BBC television director called Tony Richardson. Both were key protagonists in the development of the Free Cinema documentary movement and then, as feature film directors, the British New Wave. Free Cinema films shared a low-budget, naturalistic aesthetic thanks to handheld cameras and non-synchronised sound – usually without narration – and a focus on ordinary, often working-class subjects. Momma Don’t Allow exudes warmth and is sympathetic to its working-class characters, contrasting the relaxed, confident working-class ‘Teddy Boys’ and their girlfriends with the more awkward ‘toffs’, whose arrival threatens to change the mood of the evening.
Up Next in Dance
Directed by Kim Longinotto & Jano Williams • Documentary • 1995 • 50 minutes
This fascinating documentary, produced for the BBC, opens a door into the spectacular world of the Takarazuka Revue, a highly successful musical theater company in Japan. Each year, thousands of girls apply to enter...
Directed by David Mambouch • Documentary • 2020 • 105 minutes
Star choreographer Maguy Marin burst onto the 1970s French new wave dance scene. A contemporary of Pina Bausch, Marin’s work stood out for its theatrical aesthetic, political commentary, and audacious integration of traditional dance ...
The Written Face
Directed by Daniel Schmid • Documentary • With Tamasaburo Bando • 1999 • 89 minutes
In Japanese theater women's roles are traditionally played by men. The man playing the woman's role, the Onnagata, does not imitate the woman, as in the West, but tries to capture her significance. He need not st...