Camberwell Free Film Festival 2018


Written by Don't Panic
14 Wednesday 14th March 2018

Camberwell Free Film Festival is back. Now in its sixth year, the festival once again presents cinema fans with a fantastic programme in some of SE5's quirkiest and best loved venues. From seldom seen cult rarities, to relevant and insightful documentary, brilliantly scripted drama and visual masterpieces - this is a festival to suit all tastes.


The festival opens with 'Bunch of Kunst'- a film about English electronic punk music duo, Sleaford Mods at The Joiners Arms, hosted by Deserter. The program also highlights one film-maker's take on current, pressing social issues caused by the UK's housing crisis with a screening of Paul Sng's engaging new documentary film 'Dispossession: the great social housing swindle’. Meanwhile, Alex Barrett takes us on a poetic journey across the capital with his documentary London Symphony' - both screenings will be followed by Q&As with the filmmakers at our largest venue, William Booth College, in Denmark Hill. The festival closes with 'Paris Is Burning', Jennie Livingston's landmark film about New York's voguing scene at 'The Flying Dutchman' pub with DJs until 1am!

We caught up with Victor Ferreiro Co Founder/Organizer of the festival to find out more about it:


How long has the festival been running?

This is our 6th Year - The first was in 2013


How has it grown?

Through reputation, word of mouth, social media presence and showing good films - plus we are a wider part of which has grown to 12 festivals - mostly based in South London. The first festival was in Peckham & Nunhead in 2010.

What inspired you guys to start the festival?

A lack of cinema venues in the area (South East London in general - most have now been demolished) - more importantly we wanted to mix community with films to support our local independent businesses - long standing and more recent ones too. Which is difficult with a huge trunk road cutting through it north to south and east to west. Cars don't tend to stop too much. It's constant.


Whats special about the area?

It's still a recognizable village - unfortunately it's centre is the crossroads of a huge traffic junction which creates a lot of congestion - but a short walk away in each corner of SE5 reveals many quiet residential streets and parks which are treasured by local residents.


Are you worried about gentrification?

Yes - This is entirely run by volunteers - We largely do this for free in our spare time. The largest cost is paying for film licences and we have a modest design and marketing budget. Our screenings are free of charge in a range of venues and are welcome to all. Many of the organizers are long-term residents of this part of London. We are very aware which is why we are showing the acclaimed documentary - Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle by director Paul Sng who grew up in the local area too.


How important are films in one's education?

We always think it's important to take a chance on documentaries/films which may get forgotten by mainstream audiences. We are than happy to show a few of those and we do that regularly. Our view is that nobody should ever be intimidated to take a chance on something different - This is very much in the spirit of what going to the cinema used to be about - It wasn't elitist - it was about the communal experience. All the films we choose are very watchable and have a story to tell. Take a walk and look around the community where you live. Explore the architecture and places that perhaps you didn't realize were there - and most importantly - meet the people - Be curious and enjoy it! - It's has to be more than just a commute to and from work.


Find out more here


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