The Movie Waffler BENEDETTA, HAPPENING and BERGMAN ISLAND Headline MUBI UK’s July Lineup | The Movie Waffler

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BENEDETTA, HAPPENING and BERGMAN ISLAND Headline MUBI UK’s July Lineup

benedetta
The arthouse streaming service has unveiled its July schedule.

July on MUBI UK sees the latest movies from Paul Verhoeven and Mia Hansen-Løve hit the service, along with a new doc on Nick Cave and an acclaimed abortion drama.


benedetta

Benedetta
From renowned provocateur Paul Verhoeven (Elle, Basic Instinct), Benedetta (2021) – the subversive erotic drama based on the true story of a 17th century nun entangled in a forbidden lesbian affair – arrives exclusively on MUBI this month. 
 
Virginie Efira stars as the titular Benedetta, a nun who, devoted to the Virgin Mary as a child, is granted entry to the Theatine Convent of the Italian city of Pescia. As an unwaveringly faithful adult, Benedetta’s religious fervour begins to manifest in increasingly sensual and violent visions of Jesus. These hallucinations arouse the suspicions of Charlotte Rampling’s shrewd abbess, Sister Felicita, whose distrust grows when a farm girl called Bartolomea (Daphné Patakia) enters the convent seeking refuge, and quickly develops an attraction to Benedetta. 
 
Set to the backdrop of a country overcome by a gruesome plague, this outrageous cinematic spectacle is a mischievous and unique twist on the period drama. Verhoeven’s intoxicating latest is a transgressive and alluring look at faith, power and religion, and is every bit as scandalous as you would expect from the controversial filmmaker.



Nunsploitation Series
Alongside the release of Benedetta, MUBI presents a focus on an additional selection of transgressive Nunsploitation films, including the recently restored Mother Joan of the Angels (1961). The films range from art cinema to erotica – often set within the repressive confines of convents – criticising religious hypocrisy and the constraints placed on women.


This Much I Know to Be True

This Much I Know to Be True
This July, MUBI kicks off the series Turn It Up: Music on Film with the exclusive streaming premiere of Andrew Dominik’s breathtaking fusion of performance and documentary, This Much I Know To Be True (2022). A companion piece to his previous Cave documentary One More Time With Feeling (2016), Dominik reteams with musical collaborators Nick Cave and Warren Ellis, capturing their deep friendship and exceptional creative relationship as they bring to life songs from two of their last studio albums: ‘Ghosteen’ and ‘Carnage’. 
 
Shot on location in London and Brighton by Oscar nominated cinematographer Robbie Ryan (The Favourite), and featuring extended performance sequences accompanied by singers, a string quartet, and a special appearance by long-term collaborator Marianne Faithfull, this absorbing documentary captures the mood and spirit of the central pair as they move through a new, optimistic phase.



Turn It Up: Music on Film
Encompassing both documentary and fiction, MUBI's selection of music films celebrates the electric magnetism of performance, and moves beyond the glitz and glamour of the stage into the lives, trials, and tribulations of the artists themselves.
 
Taking us both on stage and behind the scenes, this special looks at the creative process and personal lives of both famous and less well-known musicians. Films span different musical genres, from rock to modern tango, bossa nova to protest songs. Includes Lucrecia Martel’s latest musical gem North Terminal (2021) and the 1981 masterpiece Trances, both a concert film and free-form audiovisual essay on the groundbreaking Moroccan band Nass El Ghiwane.


Bergman Island

Bergman Island
Making a splash this month on MUBI, the dazzling and bittersweet romantic drama Bergman Island (2021), from acclaimed filmmaker Mia Hansen-Løve (Eden, Things to Come), tells the story of two couples spending their summer on the breathtaking island of Fårö, where revered filmmaker Ingmar Bergman lived and worked for over forty years. 
 
Chris (Vicky Krieps) and Tony (Tim Roth) are both filmmakers, hoping to find inspiration for their next films as they retreat to the island to work on their screenplays. Meanwhile Amy (Mia Wasikowska) and Joseph (Anders Danielsen Lie), who were once lovers, are staying on Fårö to celebrate the wedding of their friend. As the summer passes by, the lines between reality and fiction become increasingly blurred as reminders of Bergman’s legacy playfully influence both stories.
 
Hansen-Løve’s latest feature, and English-language debut, is laced with characteristically semi-autobiographical elements, and is both a mischievous and elegant contemplation of love, memory and the journey of the creative process.


Happening

Happening
Adapted from Annie Ernaux’s 2000 novel of the same name, last year’s Golden Lion winner, Happening (2021), streams exclusively on MUBI this month. Director Audrey Diwan’s gripping and timely cinematic work paints a dark portrait of a society that condemns female desire and liberty. Set in 1963 France, the film tells the story of Anne – a bright, young student with a promising future – who falls pregnant and must race against time to secure her future no matter the cost. Featuring a revelatory, central performance from Anamaria Vartolomei.


a touch of sin

Time Will Transform Mountains: A Jia Zhangke Triple Bill
Known for his distinctive merging of gritty social realism with an elegant and fluid postmodern style, director Jia Zhangke cements himself as the leading chronicler of modern mainland China offering astute snapshots of the social and emotional tensions facing his nation. 
 
In July, this director spotlight is devoted to Jia’s stylish, sweeping and straight-talking dramas. A Touch of Sin (2013) marks the director’s return to fiction. A highly controversial political firebomb that the Chinese government tried to suppress, Jia’s singular combination of arthouse neorealism with visceral kung-fu vengeance won him Best Screenplay at Cannes. The grand melodrama of Mountains May Depart (2015) charts its heroine’s journey through several decades, each reflecting the pressures and desires of the time. Tracking the forces of modernisation threatening to bulldoze anything standing in the way, Jia’s films stubbornly insist on the value of individual stories of human resilience.


summer of 85

François Ozon: Intimate Summers
François Ozon has established himself as a prolific director best known for his contemporary takes on the melodrama genre. His eclectic filmography explores a wide spectrum of themes ranging from the fluidity of desire to heteronormative gender roles and the blind alleys of bourgeois life. With almost 20 films to his name, the French provocateur has built his career on a series of aesthetically fresh and daring stories that speak to a constant process of reinvention.
 
For this special, MUBI brings together three of Ozon’s sun-soaked, summer tales – Swimming Pool (2003), 5x2 (2004) and Summer of ‘85 (2020) – that take different approaches to explore the notion of time in one’s life and relationships and demonstrates his excellent use of postmodern techniques.


Mother Joan of the Angels

Mother Joan of the Angels
Beloved by Martin Scorsese, who included the film in his Masterpieces of Polish Cinema retrospective, MUBI presents a brand new restoration of Jerzy Kawalerowicz’s work of terrifying beauty, Mother Joan of the Angels (1961). Winner of the Jury Prize at the 1961 Cannes Film Festival, Kawalerowicz takes inspiration from the 17th-century records that inspired Aldous Huxley’s 'The Devils of Loudun' and later Ken Russell’s The Devils (1971) in this haunting portrait of a virtuous, young priest sent to a remote convent to investigate an outbreak of demonic possession. 60 years later this profound exploration of faith, repression, fanaticism and sexuality has lost none of its power, and remains ripe for rediscovery.



Aloners
The thoughtful and reflective film from newcomer Hong Sung-Eun, Aloners (2021) offers a diagnostic sketch of modern urban solitude through acute character observation and impressive directorial control. This is a snapshot of modern life that is cynical about the present but tinged with hope for the future. Actress Gong Seung-yeon plays Jina – the top employee at a credit card company call centre who avoids building close relationships and chooses instead to live and work alone – for which she won the Best Actor award at Jeonju for her stunning performance.



North Terminal
One of the finest international filmmakers working today, Lucrecia Martel (Zama, The Headless Woman) returns with North Terminal (2022), a short documentary produced during the 2020 lockdown that finds the Argentine master returning to her home in Salta, the nation’s most conservative region. Following singer Julieta Laso, who becomes a window into a wider community of female artists who call Salta home, the result is a gripping tribute to sorority, creative exchange and collective defiance in the face of conservatism, calling for diversity and women’s empowerment.



Wilderness
Filmed over two and a half years along the same stretch of urban beach close to his home, artist Doug Aitken pieces together a series of AI-generated song cycles narrating the cinematic scenes in his latest work Wilderness (2021). Aitken – known for genre-bending installations, featured at MoMA, Serpentine Gallery and Centre Pompidou amongst others – explores the life cycle of the individual, society, and environment and questions the inescapable fusion of the real and the digital.