Could it be that the city symphony film genre is making a comeback?
City symphonies originally became popular in the silent era, when the ‘rules’ of filmmaking were still being discovered. Films like Études sur Paris (1928) and Berlin: Symphony of a Great City (1927) offer fascinating glimpses of the times and fashions in Europe’s great cities, while the experimental documentary Man With a Movie Camera (1929) regularly tops lists of people’s favourite films of all time.
This is why director Alex Barrett has called his new film “a postmodern study of modernity”. London Symphony is like the classics of the 1920s, a modern, silent take on the English capital made nearly a century later.
The film’s composer, James McWilliam, has written a new 70 minute piece of orchestral music which is matched to the journey, and we’re delighted that we can screen this film Left Bank just after its world premiere at the Edinburgh Film Festival.
Alex Barrett / UK / 2017 / 73 minutes