When David Carne (Ian Hart) dies in Liverpool in the 1990s, his granddaughter Kim (Suzanne Maddock) discovers documents that reveal he was a righteous young Communist in the 1930s, and had travelled to Spain to fight against the Fascists in the country’s Civil War. Letters home illustrate Dave’s story, as he joined a Marxist revolutionary group in Barcelona, only to have his idealism chipped away witnessing the realities of war and the compromises of his comrades.
Land and Freedom is a rare and brilliant film about conflict, one which manages to retain a visceral energy while being emotionally engaging and intellectually challenging.
This film is screening as part of our Ken Loach retrospective (May & June). Loach’s latest film, Jimmy’s Hall, opens at the IFI on May 30th.