22nd March: 6.15pm
Mining material from The Who’s ambitious 1969 Rock Opera, director Ken Russell crafts one of the great cinematic satires of religion, consumption, and pinball fever. Presented in a brand new 4K restoration.
Who frontman Roger Daltrey, wearing a thousand-yard stare, steps into the shoes of Tommy, a deaf and blind boy whose parents (played with delirious, scene-chewing abandon by Oliver Reed and Ann-Margret), seek out outrageous means by which to cure him. As time passes, Tommy emerges as a messianic figure who inspires deep, popular, devotion in post-war Britain due to his wizard-like pinball skills.
Between seismic blasts of electric guitar, synth, and baked beans, Tommy combines music video and narrative, effectively capturing the tone of the music of The Who in a two-hour fun-bomb. Featuring cameos by the rest of The Who, Elton John, Tina Turner, Arthur Brown, and a young Jack Nicholson.
Restored in sparkling 4K with the epic songs recorded for playback on a Quintaphonic Sound system, Tommy looks and sounds better than ever.
The film will feature a short, filmed introduction by Sian Barber, Film Studies at Queen’s.
Dir: Ken Russell | 1975 | UK | 1 hr 51 mins | Cert 15