Stafford Film Theatre

The Lady in the Van
The Lady in the Van

Stafford Film Theatre celebrates its 67th birthday this year – but an exciting and diverse Spring season proves the independently funded set-up isn’t showing its age.

Established by movie enthusiasts in the post-war era, SFT continues to bring an eclectic mixture of British and foreign cinema to Stafford Gatehouse Theatre on Tuesday nights.

Launching the new season on February 9 is The Lady in the Van, the acclaimed adaptation of Alan Bennett’s play, which stars Downtown Abbey’s Dame Maggie Smith in the title role.

45 Years, which features Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtenay as a long-married couple whose world is thrown into turmoil, follows on February 16.

Later in the run comes Love & Mercy (March 29), a drama about the troubled life of Beach Boys founder Brian Wilson that critics hailed as best musical biopic ever.

SFT also has a reputation for making challenging choices. The Spring schedule includes Spanish detective thriller Marshland (February 23), Iran’s Taxi Tehran (March 8), Italy’s The Wonders, which was Grand Prix winner at the Cannes Film Festival (March 22), Estonian anti-war film Tangerines (April 5) and from Iceland, Rams (May 3).

Film-goers from the Stone and Eccleshall areas are assured of a warm welcome. The Gatehouse bar is open before the programmes start, at 7.30 (with the main feature at 7.45). There is free evening parking at nearby North Walls car-park.

Membership for all 12 films is available at £48 (Concessions £36). Tickets on the night cost £5.75 (Concessions £4.75). More details: www.filmsinstafford.com