NO FUTURE presents: LORD OF THE FLIES (1963)
PRE-SHOW: 7:30 p.m.
FILM: 8:00 p.m.
“Brook’s film isn’t just a tale of lost innocence. It is a minutely focused case study of the behaviour of kids in the wilderness.” — Geoffrey Macnab, Criterion
NO FUTURE heads back to school with Peter Brook’s LORD OF THE FLIES (1963), the venerable British theatre director’s naturalistic and raw take on Nobel Prize winner William Golding’s classic. More than just required reading for sophomores, Golding’s novel about a group of English schoolboys who shed their uniforms and better selves after crash landing on an island holds up nicely as a searing indictment of groupthink and white civility, with the film’s gorgeous black-and-white photography casting the story’s bleak moral outlook about the next generation inheriting the violent conflicts of the old into sharp relief.
Unlike the 1990 adaptation that swaps the Brits out for colourfully swearing American military school cadets, Brook’s take is a faithful presentation of Golding’s themes. His documentary-inspired approach makes excellent use of a cast of nonprofessional young actors. Along with their immediacy, what continues to make the film so haunting are the stark clarity of Golding’s symbolism and the timeliness of the allegory, which uses children to speak to how fascism rises unopposed when dithering centrists get lost in intellectual debates about rules and order. As the old chant the kids sing throughout the film goes, Kyrie eleison — Lord, have mercy!
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