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The Great Detective Film Festival at QAGOMA

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by Geraldine Massey (subscribe)
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Cinema's best whodunnits on the big screen for only $10
Who doesn't love a good whodunnit? Stellar detectives or talented amateurs pitting themselves and their insight against the evil criminal. Hercule Poirot or Sherlock Holmes in full deductive flight. A Hitchcock thriller or a gritty courtroom drama. Whatever your detective tastes, QAGOMA's Cinémathèque has got you covered with its The Great Detective Film Program, running from Friday 6 July to Sunday 2 September 2018.

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Charade, starring Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn. Image from QAGOMA website.

It is widely agreed that the first fictional detective was C. Auguste Dupin created by Edgar Allan Poe in 1841 and introduced in his story, The Murders in the Rue Morgue. And it appears that the first fictional detective to make an appearance on celluloid was, rather fittingly I think, Sherlock Holmes in a very short Mutoscope reel created between 1900 and 1903 by Arthur Marvin. The Canary Murder Case, starring the suave William Powell, has been called the first modern detective film. Ever since then a slew of detectives, amateur sleuths and thriller plots, some borrowed from literature, and some created specially for the screen, have found their way into film history and the hearts and minds of cinema goers.

For The Great Detective QAGOMA has assembled a wide range of films, from silent classics to present-day favourites, most revolving around a driven and clever protagonist using his wiles in the pursuit of justice. Literary favourites like Agatha's Christie's Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, and Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes are represented, along with famous film noir thrillers such as The Maltese Falcon; courtroom dramas such as Witness for the Prosecution (itself based on an Agatha Christie short story and play) and 12 Angry Men; Hitchcock classics like Vertigo and Rear Window; and foreign language offerings such as Chugyeokja (The Chaser) from Korea and Spain's Contratiempo (The Invisible Guest).

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Rear Window, starring James Stewart and Grace Kelly. Image from GOMA website.

Your mind will be reeling with all the murderous possibilities, twisting plots and sizzling dialogue. And you can debate the merits of the depictions of your favourite literary detectives. Who is the best Hercule Poirot, for instance, and is Basil Rathbone the greatest screen Sherlock Holmes? You'll have plenty of opportunities to decide because most films screen more than once. Murder on the Orient Express kick off the season on Friday, 6 July at 6pm and the season closer is Farewell My Lovely on Sunday 2 September at 3.15 pm.

You can access the full program here.

You can enjoy a couple of special events throughout the program.

• Screenings of two classics of silent cinema detection will be accompanied by newly scored live music performed on the Gallery's 1929 Wurlitzer organ. It will be just like cinema in the old days. See Sherlock Holmes (1916) at 11.00am on 7 July and Sherlock Jr. (1924) on 22 July at 11am. Tickets for these events are $15 and $12 for members.

• There will also be a special FREE screening of A Study in Pink - the first episode of the BBC series, Sherlock, at 11am on 18 August.

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AStudy in Pink. Image from GOMA website

Below is ticketing information for all other screenings:

Single tickets:
Adults $10; Student/Concession/Child:$8; Member $7
Available online here by clicking on the screening of your choice or from the Cinémathèque Box Office from one hour prior to screenings.

5 Film pass:
5 tickets to one film or 1 ticket to 5 different films
Adult $40: Concession $32; Member; $28
Only available at the Cinémathèque Box Office from one hour prior to screenings.

Many of the films are rated PG so why not introduce your kids to some of these classics these school holidays?

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Gosford Park. Image from GOMA website.

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Why? Whodunnit? Find out at GOMA
When: From Friday 6 July to Sunday 2 September 2018.
Where: Cinema A, GOMA
Cost: Only $10 for adults
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