London Film Festival 2021

Dressing up for the festival (his and hers)Did I mention that we both caught Covid towards the end of August?

No, of course I didn't mention it. It's exactly the sort of detail I'd deliberately hold back to use as a dramatic opening to a twelve-day liveblog, or perhaps to kick off the second chapter of Spank's LFF Diaries Volume Six: 2020-2024 (to be published by lulu.com in summer 2025). Anyway, you've probably got questions at this point, so to answer the two most important ones:

a) We're fine, thanks. It was a pretty mild case of the 'rona for both myself and The Belated Birthday Girl, and apart from slight congestion and a bit of weirdness in the taste/smell department, we both came through our ten days of self-isolation unscathed. Get vaccinated, people, and continue to behave with caution in small crowded spaces.

b) Yeah, about that. I'd imagine you're already poring over our 2021 Edinburgh Diary to see if you can work out exactly where it was we caught it. The BBG says I'm obliged to point out that really, there's no way we can be sure. Which is true, but I'd like to suggest that when that woman on the LNER advert tells you all the things you can do on their trains, she's missed one out.

So what with Edinburgh and Manchester before it, that makes it two festivals we've been to so far this year that have resulted in some sort of Covid panic for us both. Shall we try and make it three?

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Spank's LFF Diary: The Wrap Party 2020

The LFF programme cover that never was (extrapolated from an advert published in Sight & Sound)As is traditional, let's start with the numbers and the programme categories...

* Laugh: 0
* Journey: 6
* Dare: 7
* Create: 5
* Love: 4
* Cult: 1
* Debate: 6
* Family: 1
* Treasures: 3
* Experimenta: 1
* Shorts: 20
* Expanded: 5
* Events: 4

The shorts make it difficult to make a proper comparison with previous years - normally they'd be clumped into programmes, here we ended up picking and choosing from several collections. But in terms of feature films, we saw 34 in total: 26 online, 8 in cinemas. That's the same number of features as last year, before we add on all the shorts, VR gubbins and live events.

Remember how we thought a couple of months ago that there wouldn't be a 2020 London Film Festival? Looking a bit silly now, aren't we?

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