Previously at the ICA - Films

Sally Potter, Orlando, 1992

ICA Cinematheque: Orlando

1 Jun 20132 Jun 2013

Based on Virginia Woolf’s 1928 novel, Orlando is the story of someone who lives for four hundred years, changing sex in the course of time. As a young nobleman, Orlando (Tilda Swinton) is granted the Crown deeds to his parents’ ancestral home by the ageing Queen Elizabeth I on one condition: 'Do not fade. Do not wither. Do not grow old'. After a failed romance with a Russian Princess, Orlando becomes the Ambassador to the Court of Khan. War breaks out and Orlando, facing a terrible challenge for a man - to kill or be killed - changes sex. She returns to the formal salons of eighteenth-century England and discovers that as a woman she has little social status, and worse, no legal rights to either her title or her property. Here she also discovers sex in the arms of an American adventurer and ultimately loses both love and inheritance when she refuses to abandon her own path in order to follow his. Alone, Orlando finally emerges into the twentieth century as an ordinary individual who, in losing everything, has found herself.

The film, like Woolf’s novel, is a witty exploration of the role of women in British society over the ages, but it is more than a feminist tract.

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See Orlando and Man to Man for just £15. Offer available in person or by calling the Box Office on 020 7930 3647.

Orlando, dir. Sally Potter, UK 1992, 93 mins, cert. PG

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