26 September 2023


Start the conversation

Presented by Palace Cinemas, the British Film Festival celebrates the best of British films in a remarkable line up of 31 films, a number of which are screening for the first time in Australia.

Stellar performances from Festival favourites and newcomers will delight audiences and include some of the most significant British films of the 1970s.

Screenings will take place from 3 November and 1 December in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth Sydney (and Byron Bay)

The Festival opens with the Australian Premiere of The Duke, a heart-warming tale based on a 1961 true story of 60-year-old taxi driver Kempton Bunton who steals Goya’s portrait of the Duke of Wellington from London’s National Gallery, featuring performances from Jim Broadbent and Helen Mirren.

The other major highlights are:

  • Belfast directed by Kenneth Branagh is a personal eulogy to his hometown.

The film which stars Jamie Dornan and Judi Dench is a poignant story of love, laughter and loss in one boy’s childhood, set amidst the music and social turmoil of the late 1960s Northern Ireland.

  • Last Night In Soho is Edgar Wright’s psychological horror fantasy starring Anya Taylor – Joy and Thomasin McKenzie.

It follows an aspiring fashion designer who is mysteriously able to enter the 1960s where she encounters a dazzling wannabe singer.

  • Ali & Ava is a compelling contemporary love story from writer – director Clio Barnard and set in multicultural Bradford.

Enveloped in music and imbued with humour, the film stars Adeel Akhtar and Claire Rushbrook.

  • Lady Boss: The Jackie Collins Story is the amazing life story of the legendary author and sister of Joan, Jackie Collins which reveals the untold story of a ground-breaking author and her mission to build a one-woman literary empire.
  • Best Sellers is a comedy drama starring British icon Sir Michael Caine as a cranky, retired author who reluctantly decides on embarking on a final book tour.
  • Off The Rails follows three female friends in their 50’s as they attempt to recreate an inter-rail journey across Europe they made three decades earlier, with their friend’s 18-year-old daughter taking her mother’s place.
  • Operation Mincemeat starring Colin Firth and Matthew McFadyen, is based on the Allies’ deception effort to keep the Allied invasion of Italy hidden and outwit German troops in WW2.
  • The War Below is also based on true events during WW1 which centres on a group of British miners called upon to dig a strategic tunnel in no man’s land.
  • The Last Bus is a touching adventure across Britain starring Timothy Spall, which follows the journey of a pensioner travelling only on local buses from Britain’s most Northerly to its most Southerly point.
  • Mothering Sunday stars Olivia Colman, Colin Firth, Josh O’Connor and Australian Odessa Young in a romantic period drama set in post-World War I England about a maid who secretly plans to meet with the man she loves before he leaves to marry another woman.
  • Falling For Figaro from director Ben Lewin, is a romantic comedy starring Danielle Macdonald and Joanna Lumley about a young woman who quits her job and ends things with her long-term boyfriend to chase her lifelong dream of becoming an opera singer in the Scottish Highlands.
  • To Olivia is a powerful and emotional drama starring Hugh Bonneville and Keeley Hawes that tells the story of the tribulations behind best-selling novelist Roald Dahl’s marriage to Academy Award winning actress Patricia Neal.
  • Miss Marx is the story of Karl Marx’s youngest daughter Eleanor who also followed in his footsteps fighting for social justice and starring the charismatic Romola Garai.
  • It Snows In Benidorm stars Timothy Spall about a man searching for his missing brother and in The Obscure Life Of The Grand Duke Of Corsica which is an intriguing meditation on life, love and architecture set during a pandemic in two different eras.
  • Stardust follows a young David Bowie, played by Johnny Flynn, on a 1971 road trip across America when he was developing his Ziggy Stardust persona.
  • 7 From The 70s’ retrospective features the films Clockwork Orange, Barry Lyndon, Sunday Bloody Sunday, Straw Dogs, The Railway Children, Quadrophenia and The Go-Between.

The 2021 British Film Festival is screening nationally in the following locations:

Adelaide: 3 Nov – 1 Dec, Palace Nova Eastend Cinemas, Palace Nova Prospect Cinemas

Brisbane: 3 Nov – 1 Dec, Palace Barracks and Palace James Street

Canberra: 3 Nov – 1 Dec, Palace Electric Cinemas

Melbourne: 5 Nov – 1 Dec, Palace Cinema Como, Palace Westgarth, Palace Balwyn, Palace Brighton Bay, Kino Cinemas, Pentridge Cinemas and The Astor Theatre

Perth: 3 Nov – 1 Dec, Palace Raine Square, Luna on SX, Leederville and Windsor

Sydney: 3 Nov – 1 Dec, Palace Norton Street, Palace Verona, Chauvel Cinemas, Palace Central

Byron Bay: 3 – 21 Nov, Palace Byron Bay


Start the conversation

Be among the first to get all the Public Sector and Defence news and views that matter.

Subscribe now and receive the latest news, delivered free to your inbox.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.