MUST DO: Tufnell Park Film Club

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Co-founder Nigel Smith on his very popular NW5 movie club, which takes place fortnightly in The Star


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Dartmouth Park gastropub The Star now plays host to the film club. Photo: Dan Hall
Dartmouth Park gastropub The Star now plays host to the film club. Photo: Dan Hall
My mate Wayne Gooderham and I started Tufnell Park Film Club four years ago in the hope that there might be a few locals who fancied watching good movies in the convivial atmosphere of a pub function room.

Since then we’ve shown more than 130 films, all of which (we hope) abide by Billy Wilder’s guiding principle: “Thou shalt not bore.”

What marks us as slightly different from other local clubs is that the audience vote for the next film from a choice of three titles linked thematically to what they’ve just seen.

For instance, after screening the 1972 Liza Minelli musical Cabaret, three more works set in Berlin were up for the vote. Wings of Desire won, prompting the next vote between a trio featuring angels. (If you’re as geeky as we are you can see the chain so far on our website below).

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Nigel Smith, Wicker Man director Robin Hardy and Wayne Gooderham. Photo: TPFC
TPFC’s Nigel Smith and Wayne Gooderham with Wicker Man director Robin Hardy (centre). Photo: TPFC
In addition to this fortnightly chain, we take part in events like the upcoming LOCO London Comedy Film Festival, and screen films in tribute to recently deceased legends.

When Christopher Lee died last year we were incredibly lucky to welcome Wicker Man director Robin Hardy (pictured) for a great Q&A and hear his memories about working with Lee.

We’ve also started Sunday afternoon matinees which allow us to show something a little longer than usual; they also give our members a good excuse to make use of the 20% discount they get on food at The Star pub by having a good lunch beforehand.

Finally, every three months we host a quiz where the winners get to choose a film to show at the club and the losers get a jar of Barry Norman’s pickled onions.

Quite literally, everyone’s a winner.

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Tonight the film is the 1970s classic Assault on Precinct 13. Films show every other Tuesday, 8pm, upstairs at The Star, 47 Chester Road, N19. Annual membership is £15 and includes all films, 20% off food on film night and 10% off at other times. Info here

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