Books, Film & TV Wednesday, October 17th

What to watch at Hereford's new film fest B2

Books, Film & TV Wednesday, October 17th

What to watch at Hereford's new film fest B2

This week sees the launch of B2 - a painfully-cool mini film-fest from the people behind Borderlines, which features everything from scriptwriting crash courses from Doctor Who writers, to fresh docos on trip hop DJs.

It's going on across multiple venues (although the main action is at the Courtyard and HCA) - and you can view the full listings here. But we've picked out some of best stuff to book up, and caught up with the organisers for a quick Q + A on what this is all about. Check out both below.


Double features. Triple features. A pre-Scissorhands Jonny Depp starring in a 50s teen comedy-musical opposite Iggy Pop. If you like the movies – and if you like going to the movies – you’re going to love the B2 lineup.

One of the best things about the programme is that everything feels like an event. The listings look like Christmas Come Early for fanboys and fangirls, layering up features upon features to build up the hype. You like Simon Pegg? Here’s ALL THE SIMON PEGG FILMS.


Like contemporary urban horror? How about watching 2004’s Dawn Of The Dead, at night, in an indoor shopping centre not unlike the one used by humans to hide out in in the movie.

There’s doco’s on the Polka Dot Andy Warhol – and an art installation at HCA taking Kusama’s style and running with it – and on trip hop superstar James Lavelle (followed by a DJ set with visuals from MASH Cinema). There’s an all-singing, all-dancing Saturday night double, at the Left Bank, featuring a pair of toe-tapping, good time camped-up teen films that might not be the ones that initially spring to mind. And there’s roster of original short films and animation from local talent that you can drop in on throughout the weekend, for free, in a glass box in the middle of the Old Market Shopping Centre.


It’s not just screenings and parties. This isn’t Cannes. There’s also a handful of workshops going on around Hereford in conjunction with B2 – some of which may one day get you to one of Leo’s yacht parties on the French Riviera.

On Thursday and Friday there’s a double-feature of sorts; Keith Martin, who’s written for Doctor Who and Doc Martin is running a crash course in script writing. Beat The Clock, Write The Script is two, two-hour sessions where you bring your ideas, and the idea is you walk away with a first draft script. Whether you reckon you’re the next Sorkin, or have just said ‘that’d be a great movie’ too many times not to give it a go – this a great chance to put some words on a  page and get some tips from a pro.


Also catching the eye is Elfen’s branding workshop on Thursday morning. We live in a world of Swooshes and Apples, and if you don’t think Nike’s trademark tick is at least slightly responsible for its rise to dominance over, for example, Kappa then you’re kidding yourself. Elfen have been winning awards for twenty years – including BAFTA noms for their graphics - as they help create iconic branding across multimedia. The duo behind the design agency will be at HCA for a masterclass.


Ten days after the credits roll on B2, there’s another treat for film fans. Or trick.

Visit Herefordshire’s horror film guru Andy Black is running a series of outdoor screenings across the county that will send shivers down your spine, regardless of what coat you wear.

On the 31st , Oakchurch is hosting a double-feature with Romero’s 80’s gore-fest Day of the Dead preceded by a more family-friendly film being voted for on Facebook (Hocus Pocuscurrently leads Ghostbusters). And then on the 2nd and 3rd there’s a pair of events at a country house in Colwall, starting with the 50th anniversary of Witchfinder General followed by the Sami Raimi’s classic Evil Dead. On the Saturday it’s The Devil Rides Out – another 50th anniversary screening – followed by Eden Lake, one of the best Brit horror films of the last ten years.

You can head over here to vote, or get more info on what to bring, how to get there and general policy on dressing up as Bette Midler.



Q + A

B2 feels like Borderlines’ cool, younger sibling - where did the idea come from?

Thanks, cool younger sibling sounds good! We wanted to do something that offered a more immersive cinema experience, to stretch the form and curate with younger audiences in Hereford. It feels like the city is changing and it seemed a good moment to bring a lot of different organisations together to put on a celebration of cinema.


If B2 was a film, what film would B2 be?

You know the opening party sequence of Sorrentino's The Great Beauty? That would do for me.


What are you most excited to go and see/do/listen to?

Hmm, tricky, asking me to play favourites? I think there is something for everyone, but maybe the most extravagant event will be Dawn of the Dead in The Atrium at Maylords Cinema with additional gore. Tickets are limited so probably best to get booking.


Aside from its length and geography, what are the differences to when it comes to sitting down and programming something like this compared Borderlines?

B2 is really different to Borderlines. It is a much more collaborative approach and we've worked with MASH Cinema, who are presenting 3 elements in the Festival and mediaShypp, Rural Media, Hereford College of Art, Meadow Arts and Clik Clik Collective to bring the programme together. The films have been selected by consulting with groups of young people, so it is very different to Borderlines, where a much smaller number of people are involved in programming.


Who made the (brilliant) promo material?

Elfen, our designers from Cardiff, came on board to originate the branding and publicity material. We've been working with them since Borderlines began and they've done a terrific job with B2. They are also sponsors of B2, so they are really behind this new festival.


What are the chances we find the next Sorkin at the scriptwriting masterclasses?

Why not? Stories come from every direction. I know there are some world class scriptwriters who have settled in Herefordshire and Jesse Armstrong came from Shropshire, good writers can spring up from anywhere.


Which of the lesser-known films being screened will you be recommending to all of your friends to go and see?

Kusama and The Man From Mo'Wax are brand new releases, so we are really pleased to have them in the programme, while some of the others are classic comedies. You don't often get a chance to sit down and watch the Cornetto Triology in a pop-up venue, so if you want to laugh all night with your mates, that sounds a good choice.

I'm also really intrigued by Feed Me, Rachel Maclean's film showing for free at Hereford College of Art and presented in collaboration with Meadow Arts. Rachel's a rising star in the art world and was the performance artist at Birmingham's Bull Ring. She has a new film premiering at the London Film Festival too, Make Me Up so it's really worth dropping by the College to see some of her work.

feedme web

What’s the link with Horrorford?

Horrorford is also a new festival venture for Herefordshire, being run by Andy Black and Rich Matthews. It's such a brilliant name and unlike B2 takes places outside the city.  We are very happy to promote it and I'm intrigued by their two 50th anniversary screenings. Like B2 it is a starter project and offers more choice for film lovers of all genres. So after B2, film lovers can go on to Horrorford 10 days later - 3 film festivals in a year for Herefordshire, who would have thought!

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