Image for The Story of a Three Day Pass (N/C 15+)

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The Story of a Three Day Pass (N/C 15+)

8 September

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  • A Autism friendly
  • C Captioned
  • D Dementia friendly


Melvin Van Peebles’s edgy, angsty, romantic first feature could never have been made in America. Unable to break into a segregated Hollywood, Van Peebles decamped to France, taught himself the language, and wrote a number of books in French, one of which, La Permission, would become the basis for his stylistically innovative feature debut.

Turner (Harry Baird), an African-American soldier stationed in France, is granted a promotion and a three-day leave from base by his casually racist commanding officer. Turner heads to Paris, where he has a whirlwind romance with a white woman (Nicole Berger) - but what happens to their love when his leave is over?

Channelling the brash exuberance of the French New Wave, Van Peebles creates an exploration of the psychology of an interracial relationship, as well as a commentary on France’s contradictory attitudes about race that is by turns playful, sarcastic, and stingingly subversive. The Story of a Three Day Pass laid the foundation for the scorched-earth cinematic revolution he would unleash just a few years later with Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song.

Newly restored in 4K, The Story of a Three Day Pass is presented as part of Cinema Rediscovered on Tour, a Watershed project with support from BFI, awarding funds from The National Lottery and MUBI.

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Description of image
  • Director Melvin Van Peebles
  • Cast Harry Baird, Nicole Berger, Pierre Doris
  • Country USA
  • Year of Production 1967
  • Running Time 1h27m
  • Certificate N/C 15+

All Monday to Friday shows before 5pm have capacity capped at 50% (unless otherwise stated). All other screenings have full unlimited seating capacity (unless otherwise stated).

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