The Fabulous Picture Show


A look at one unusual young man and his involvement with the Belgian hormone mafia.

Belgian director Michael Roskam wanted to make a gangster film with a distinctly local flavour – although rural west Flanders is more “livestock” than “Lock Stock”. 

But the murder of a policeman investigating illegal steroid use in cattle farming provided Roskam with the local angle he had been seeking. And the result is Bullhead, a sui generis look at one unusual young man and his involvement with the Belgian hormone mafia.

Bullhead was a surprise hit of this year’s Berlin Film Festival, and filmmaker Michael Roskam joins Amanda Palmer, Al Jazeera’s head of entertainment, and the FPS audience for a beefy Q&A session.

A Separation

A Separation

Also ringing all the bells at Berlin this year was A Separation, an Iranian drama that won the top prize, the Golden Bear. 

A Separation looks at the deterioration of an Iranian marriage, but its subtext is a message about modern Iranian society. 

Iranian cinema was only recently regarded as amongst the world’s finest, but the current political situation has had a devastating effect.

FPS speaks to director Asghar Farhadi about A Separation, and looks at the current generation of Iranian filmmakers – some of whom, like Jafar Panahi, have been imprisoned for their work, plus others who have been banned and threatened. 

Even the Rain

Even the Rain

What would you do if your government told you that all the water in your area was privately owned – and you were not even permitted to collect rainwater?

Well, this actually happened in Bolivia, and the film Even the Rain offers a dramatic account of what happened when the people tried to rise up against this aqua-tyranny.

Mexico’s Gael Garcia Bernal stars alongside indigenous non-professionals as a filmmaker who stumbles into this sad situation.

The script was by Paul Laverty, a long-time screenwriter for British filmmaker Ken Loach. 

FPS speaks to Laverty about the centuries-old inspiration behind this stirring new feature.

This episode of The Fabulous Picture Show can be seen from Friday, June 3, at the following times GMT: Friday: 1930; Saturday: 1430; Sunday: 0430; Monday: 0830.