Modern classics and early animations from the BFI on Into Film+

23 Jan 2024 in Into Film+

7 mins
A resource that uses The Adventures of Prince Achmed to explore and discuss
A resource that uses The Adventures of Prince Achmed to explore and discuss

As part of Into Film's partnership with the British Film Institute (BFI), we are pleased to announce that several new titles are now available to stream for free* on Into Film+. Adding to our growing selection of independent features and classic titles from the BFI catalogue, these films offer an insight into early animation techniques, the development of contemporary British cinema, and European art house narratives.

Our team has carefully selected a range of feature-length films that cover topics including film history, citizenship and immigration and are relevant for subjects including Media Studies, French and Relationships and Sex Education. Each is accompanied by a specifically designed film guide to engage young audiences and stimulate discussion.

The Adventures of Prince Achmed

Known as the world's oldest surviving animated feature film, this magical fable is based on an Arabic folktale in One Thousand and One Nights, long before Disney drew inspiration from the same text for Aladdin. The brave young Prince Achmed is eager for adventure. He steals a flying horse from an African wizard and embarks on a journey to Wak Wak, the realm of spirits. Here he falls in love with a fairy princess, Pari Banu, and must defeat an army of demons to win her heart. German theatre designer-turned-filmmaker Lotte Reiniger spent three years painstakingly crafting the silhouette paper cut-out puppets, whose shadows come to life accompanied by the dramatic orchestral score against the richly coloured backgrounds.

Further archival gems from the BFI available to stream on Into Film+ include Georges Méliés' A Trip to the Moon, as well as an early example of stop-motion animation Animated Putty, which you can discover together with Shaun the Sheep Movie.

Mogul Mowgli

Finding your voice, and having confidence in its authenticity, is a challenge that resonates with many young people. Added to the set films on the WJEC Eduqas A Level Film Studies syllabus for assessments from 2025, Mogul Mowgli follows Zed, a British-Pakistani rapper on the brink of stardom, whose life takes an unexpected turn when he is diagnosed with a debilitating autoimmune disease. As he grapples with his identity, family expectations, and the impact of his illness, Zed faces a profound journey of self-discovery. Painting a complex but somehow universal portrait of the immigrant experience that is rarely seen in British cinema, the film captures both the chaos and joy that come with being torn between two identities.

Other films that explore the impact of immigration on younger generations, also previously added from the BFI catalogue, include two different perspectives on racial tensions in London throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Jemima + Johnny and Pressure, and a charming 1990s short film about the two cousins discussing diasporic experiences, Latifah and Himli's Nomadic Uncle.

La Mif (The Fam)

In this French-language film, writer and director Fred Baillif adopts a bold approach to storytelling to create a drama that bristles with a rare intensity and dangerous energy, conveying the state of being for seven teenage girls living in residential care in Geneva. A former social worker himself, Baillif worked with a non-professional cast made up of people with direct experience of social care, an approach that garnered raw but persuasive performances crackling with authenticity. Each is woven into chapters, with events repeated from each character's perspective, incrementally revealing layers of insight and nuance. The result is a powerful and emotional examination of the impacts of abuse, coming of age, and the morals and ethics of social care.

This title may be watched in conjunction with La Haine and The 400 Blows, two other French-language films already available to stream on Into Film+ thanks to our partnership with the BFI, which also investigate young people's contentious relationship with authority.

Discover the BFI with Into Film+

You can find even more titles released by the BFI on Into Film+, including acclaimed coming-of-age story County Lines about a 14-year-old groomed into a drug-selling network, and My Feral Heart, a refreshingly perceptive film about a young man with Down's syndrome who moves to the countryside. Selected titles from the BFI National Archive include short films that bring to life the realities of those on the frontlines of World War One and World War Two, including examples of propaganda such as A Call for Arms!, and early screen adaptations of Shakespeare's plays, collected in Shakespeare Archive Shorts. We are excited to continue to expand our catalogue with the support of the BFI, to highlight the educational value of British and international film histories.

* Screenings for an entertainment or extra-curricular purpose require a PVS (Public Video Screening) Licence from Filmbankmedia. State-funded schools in England are covered by the PVS Licence.
Into Film and the Into Film+ streaming service is supported by the UK film industry through Cinema First and the BFI through National Lottery Funding, thanks to National Lottery players.

This Article is part of: Into Film+

Find out all about the Into Film+ streaming platform, and check out the latest films added and available to stream.

View other Articles in this column

You may also be interested in...

Viewing 4 of 4 related items.

Into Film Clubs

Into Film Clubs

Find out everything you need to know about starting an Into Film Club.

News details

Want to write for us?

Get in touch with your article ideas for the News and Views section.