At the RIO

Now Showing
and Coming Soon…
Now showing until Thursday Dec 8
Time for an update of Aristophanes’ 2,500-year-old Greek tragedy “Lysistrata” – the one in which the wives withhold sex from their husbands – and Spike Lee’s bold, blistering, imaginative, incendiary updating could not be more contemporarily relevant. Set against a background of street gang warfare in present day Chicago, CHI-RAQ is a State of the Nation report like no other.
Lysistrata (Teyonah Parris) is in love with aspiring rapper Demetrius “Chi-Raq” Dupree (Nick Cannon), but detests the bloody war between his Spartan gang and the rival Trojans, led by Cyclops (Wesley Snipes), and organises that famous ultimatum in an attempt to stop the fighting: “No peace, no pussy.”
Scorching social satire and farce with a deadly serious core meets raunchy entertainment in a real spellbinder of a movie. Aristophanes would have approved.
“The film-maker is back at the top of his game with this incendiary look at life in a gang-ravaged Chicago, featuring a break-out performance from Teyonah Parris”
5/5 stars The Guardian
Now showing until Thur Dec 1

Paterson (15)  BOOK TICKETS

Jim Jarmusch, one of the most audacious and pleasurable of modern film-makers, is in top form with a wonderfully funny and warm meditation on everyday life.
Adam Driver is Paterson, a bus driver and poet in the city of Paterson, New Jersey, which was home to the poet William Carlos Williams, one of whose most famous poems is titled Paterson… Paterson gets up each day and drives his bus, while drawing inspiration for the poetry he shyly loves to write from the ostensibly mundane things that occur while he is on his route. His wife Laura stays at home, where she paints, designs, learns the guitar and ponders career options, overseen by the couple’s English bulldog (Cannes Palm Dog award winner Nellie, R.I.P.) From these seemingly inauspicious minutiae Jarmusch weaves a tapestry of honest, hopeful small-town life that is rich in comic detail and genuine warmth.
“Adam Driver beguiling in miraculous tale of everyday goodness”
5/5 stars The Guardian

Sunday 4 Dec at 2.30pm
PANIC (15) + film maker Q&A BOOK TICKETS
How do you find someone who doesn’t exist? How in 2016 do you get a refreshingly independent British feature film on to the nation’s cinema screens on which it belongs? With great difficulty most likely, but answers to both questions can be found in this special screening of writer-director Sean Spencer’s thriller PANIC followed by a Q&A with some of the people who made it.

Music journalist Andrew Deeley (David Gyasi) lives in a high-rise tower block, physically and mentally scarred from a vicious attack. Alone and cut off from the world, he obsesses over Kem (Yennis Cheung), his classically beautiful Chinese neighbour. Her disappearance is the start of an obsessive quest that takes Deeley, armed with only an Oyster card and a hammer, ever deeper into a dangerous, uncaring world.

With its striking use of East End locations and an outstanding performance from rising star David Gyasi (Romilly in Christopher Nolan’s INTERSTELLAR), PANIC is vibrant and relevant independent film-making at its very best

Other Highlights coming soon…

Fri 9 Dec to Thur 15 Dec

“Course I’m not gay – I’m a footballer.” Ten years in the life of Jason, a Premier League player in a sport where image is everything. As an ambitious 19-year-old he shares a room with teammate Ade on the night before their first international match. There’s laddish banter, jokes, high jinks and then, out of nowhere, a kiss. It’s a moment that changes everything.

Adapted by John Donnelly from his own critically acclaimed play, this intimate and urgent look atsecrecy, fame, and sexuality is compellingly directed by Ben A. Williams, his first feature. A sensation in the original Royal Court production, Russell Tovey is brilliant as a man battling desires and self-hatred, and there’s a pitch-perfect performance from Arinze Kene as Ade. It all adds up tp a fascinating, frank and outstanding look beyond the sports page headlines and a world that ‘is full of people, who are pretending to be something they’re not.’

Fri 9 Dec to Thursday 15 Dec
Snowden (15)BOOK TICKETS

Patriot, dissident, or traitor? Few contemporary public figures are as contentious as National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden. whose decision to leak classified information alerted this brave new technological world to the shocking extent its privacy had been compromised. Oliver Stone’s part biopic, part fact-based espionage thriller — follows Snowden (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) from the army to the CIA, and eventually to his post as an analyst for the NSA. The journey into an ever deepening labyrinth of eerie revelations runs alongside a complex portrait of a complex man and a portrait of a world whose existence was a revelation to most.
Oliver Stone, never a director to steer away from controversy, brilliantly balances this multi-tiered look at the United States of Surveillance as he spine-tinglingly explores both what it all really means and who Edward Snowden really is.

Sunday Dec 11 is Blue Velvet day at the RIO
Blue Velvet (18)BOOK TICKETS
At 2pm
Whether as one of the all-time greats, as one of the standout films of the 1980s, as one of the best examples of American surrealism or as one of the finest of David Lynch movies, it is time to celebrate BLUE VELVET’s 30th anniversary. Here’s an opportunity to see, or see again, a landmark movie which has inspired countless tributes, cultural references and parodies but still remains as subversive, surreal and shocking as it did in 1986.

Blue Velvet Revisited – The Documentary (15)BOOK TICKETS

At 4.30pm
Based on hours of footage exclusively filmed and photographed on the set of the film, Peter Braatz’s documentary is a stunning and evocative record of the making of an iconic cult classic. With an all-new soundtrack by veteran experimental rockers Tuxedomoon, among others, BLUE VELVET REVISITED is an unmissable and inspirational homage to movie-making.

This Christmas give the gift of RIO membership !

…and get free tickets to see one of the greatest films ever… we will be screening IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE on Sunday 18 December at 4pm, and we will be giving away free tickets to members on a first come first served basis (2 per member) so don’t hang around we only have a limited quantity, email us on with your request and membership number.

As a RIO member you’ll be supporting Hackney’s only independent community cinema and you’ll save money with up to £3 off tickets, and 10% off food and drinks at the café bar.

Plus we will be bringing you monthly offers from business and cultural partners in Hackney, and free member previews of some of the great films coming up at the Rio, it’s only £30 for an annual membership and £45 for joint annual membership.

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