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The 45th release in the BFI Flipside series of rediscovered British cinema, The Ballad of Tam Lin was the first and only film directed by the Hollywood actor Roddy McDowall (best known, perhaps, for The Planet of the Apes).
Loosely based on the traditional Scottish folk ballad, this 1971 rarity stars silver screen icon Ava Gardner (The Killers) as a mysterious and wealthy older woman who uses witchcraft to exercise control over a group of younger hippies and thrill-seekers (played by a sensational cast including Ian McShane (Deadwood), Joanna Lumley (Absolutely Fabulous) and Bruce Robinson (Withnail And I). Features music is by folk-rock legends Pentangle, and spectacular cinematography by Academy Award-winner Billy Williams (Women in Love, Gandhi).
Part folk-horror and part Blow-Up style Swinging-60s critique, this unique cult film is being made available for the first time on Blu-ray in the UK.
BFI Flipside is dedicated to rediscovering the margins of British film, reclaiming a space for forgotten movies and filmmakers who would otherwise be in danger of disappearing from our screens forever. It is a home for UK cinematic oddities, offering everything from exploitation documentaries to B-movies, countercultural curios and obscure classics, If it's weird, British and forgotten, then it's Flipside.
Presented in High Definition
Interview with Roddy McDowall (1998, 17 mins)
Interview with Jacqui McShee (2022): newly recorded interview with the lead singer of British folk-jazz band Pentangle
**FIRST PRESSING ONLY** Illustrated booklet with new writing on the film by William Fowler
Other extras TBC