February Is Film Festival Season In Keswick

February is film season in Keswick with THREE film festivals taking place.

Running for over 20 years, Keswick Film Festival returns with another wide range of stunning films.

As part of its world tour, the Banff Film Festival is visiting Theatre by the Lake with two new adventure film collections.

And for the first time, Keswick Alhambra Cinema is hosting the Mint Chinese Film Festival.

With such a wide variety there is something for everyone. Read on to find out more. 

Mint Chinese Film Festival - 3-5th February 2023

This year is the inaugural Mint Chinese Film Festival, a three-day festival with live music, panel discussion, director Q&A and other exciting activities. The festival is co-founded by curator Yixiang Shirley Lin and the owner/operator of the Keswick Alhambra Cinema, Dr Carol Rennie. It is the first Chinese film festival in Cumbria focussed on cross-cultural communication and women’s representation in films. Not only will it be the first Chinese film festival in Cumbria, but it is also likely to be the first Chinese language film festival founded and organised by a team of female curators and professionals in Europe.

3-5th February at Keswick Alhambra. 

Find out more and book your festival pass here.

Keswick Film Festival - 23rd - 26th February 2023

Keswick Film Festival has been running since 2000 and 2023 will be its 23rd year.

Their film programme is assembled and this year there is a collection of films that will delight you, challenge you, entertain you and occasionally, wonder 'what was that all about?'

All sorts of films will be showing over the festival, we have highlighted just a few.

The Festival opens with Godland. A stunning film set in Iceland tells the story of a young Danish priest in the late 19th century, who travels to a remote part of Iceland to build a church and photograph its people. But the deeper he goes into the unforgiving landscape, the more he strays from his purpose, the mission and morality.

The special guest this year will be Hassan Nazer who will introduce his film Winners at the Gala Screening on Friday 24th February. It won the Audience Award at the Edinburgh Film Festival, Best Film at the British Independent Film Awards and is now the Official UK entry for Best International Film at this year’s Oscars. Winners is an Iranian film where one day nine-year-old Yahya and his friend Leyla find a precious statue. Sharing a passion for cinema, Yahya's boss Nasser Khan decides to help them find the owner.

Always a highlight of the weekend is the Osprey Short Film Awards. Entries are currently being shortlisted for the festival. They will cover a variety of topics which last year included running, walking and bouldering in the Lakes, a study of the Duddon Valley, stories of friendship and relationships and living with and alongside dementia. You can see last year’s films here

A first for the festival is a film from Bhutan, Lunana, A Yak in the Classroom is about Ugyen who wants to be a singer and move to Australia. However his National Service requires him to be a teacher and in light of his indifference to the role, he is sent to the most remote school on earth, much against his will. Visually stunning and emotionally uplifting, Lunana, which is the first film from Bhutan to be nominated for an Oscar, may be the hit of the Festival.

The festival is on from 23rd to 26th February and will have films at Alhambra Cinema, Theatre by the Lake and Rheged (including a shuttle bus). 

Full details and tickets for all films can be found here.

Banff Film Festival - 17-18th February

Theatre By the Lake is hosting Banff Film Festival, inspirational adventure films from from the world's most prestigious mountain film festival. The world's best filmmakers and explores push themselves to the limits in the most remote and stunning corners of the globe. Witness epic human-powered feats, life-affirming challenges and mind-blowing cinematography - all on the big screen.

There are two shows, each with an entirely different selection of films, so choose which programme you want to see best or book both for a two-show discount. 

17-18th February at Theatre by the Lake.

Full details of all films and bookings here.