Flatpack Festival takes an alternative look at the world of film

If you loved Avengers: Endgame but are even a tiny bit worried that your film tastes might be getting a little too mainstream, this week Birmingham’s Flatpack Festival arrives to provide something a little more quirky and eclectic for the fan of all things filmic.

Described in The Independent as “the UK’s most creatively curated film festival” now in its 13th-year Flatpack has come a long way from its origins in a mixed-media film night at the Rainbow pub in Digbeth and now offers so much more for the discerning film enthusiast.

Here are our Top 5 choices from some of the more curious-sounding events at the festival, each of which has the added benefit of being free to attend:

  • Bermingham: The (Not Entirely) True Story of a Misspelt City (1st – 11th May @ Centrala on Fazeley Street)

BAFTA award-winning Greg McLeod creates 1000 illustrations of the city where he grew up, but look closely, as all is not what it seems. Along with his illustrations adorning the walls of Centrala a new film will play in a loop in the gallery charting an (un)true history of the city.

  • The Digital Diaspora (Thursday May 2nd 6.15pm @ Centrala on Fazeley Street)

Presented by Short Circuit – an international platform for collaborative practices in digital art and moving image, this programme of curated film screenings and accompanying discussion addresses key areas of migration, borders, territory, cultural identity and belonging.

  • Pram Video Party (Friday May 3rd 9.30pm – late @ The Flatpack Hub on Gibb Street)

Experimental Birmingham band Pram premiere two films to accompany tracks from their new album Across the Meridian. The screenings will be followed by a DJ set from members of the band featuring off-beat electronics, crazed instrumentals and exotica.

  • The Soundplay Dome (Saturday 4th May 10.00am – 5.00pm @ Mac Birmingham)

Music. Movement. Play. That’s the name of the game in this unique interactive musical installation designed to stimulate creativity in children and adults of all ages. It’s a multi-sensory, audio-visual pop-up playground that combines digital art and music ideal for families to enjoy together.

  • This Magnificent Cake! + Oh Willy… (Sunday May 5th 3.oopm @ The Flatpack Hub on Gibb Street)

Belgian stop-motion film-making duo De Swaef and Roels present their hit 2012 short Oh Willy… along with the brand new This Magnificent Cake! a dark comedy set in 19th century Africa which confronts European taboos and traditions.

Flatpack Festival 2019 runs from April 30th to May 5th with over 100 events and screenings at venues across the city. Some events are ticketed. Details at www.flatpackfestival.org.uk