u3a - Film


Contact the adviser


Hello, my name is Claire, and thank you for visiting this Subject Advice page for Film.

Good company

Are you in an existing u3a film group, or maybe you love film and are new to u3a? You’re in good company: there are over 180 u3a groups devoted to film.

Chances are that, for you, films are a fascinating window on to the world and human relationships. Or maybe you like movies that inspire, that inform, that entertain? ’Yes to all of those’, I hear you say?

At u3a, films are these things and more. We like to share the enjoyment and talk with others about what we’ve watched. True, sometimes you won’t like a film. Sharing your views is still interesting – why do some movies divide opinion so starkly? (Anchorman 2, I’m looking at you.)

 “Drama is life with the dull bits cut out” – Alfred Hitchcock


Through the looking-glass

And a good film contains so much. The story and the actors, of course, but also the director – is it their first work, or what else have they directed? - the way the camera is used, the insight into different cultures … Few things can put you as passionately into some one else’s shoes. Through the looking-glass of films like Mustang, Capernaum, The Life Ahead, and so many more from other countries, you can see the world in a different way.

Many ways to enjoy

Whatever floats your boat, I am hoping there will be a u3a group for you. Some groups like their cinema trips. Some get together and talk about what they’ve recently seen. Others agree specific films to watch between meetings. Putting on film screenings, or focussing on a particular genre or director, is how some u3as like to work.

It’s all about enjoying film. If you don’t see what you want in your u3a, why not consider starting a group? Chances are, others will be interested in your idea. And you’ll get lots of support. So if you’re after suggestions for a new group or your existing one – or if you just have a film comment – please don’t hesitate to contact me. And if you feel like sending in a short film review, that would be great too. I look forward to hearing from you!

Film Reviews

Crazy Rich Asians

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man … “ You can probably finish this Jane Austen quote, but how about translating it to modern-day Singapore? The film Crazy Rich Asians takes us there. Rachel is a New York economics professor; she and boyfriend Nick are a young Chinese-American couple in love. When Nick invites Rachel to visit his family in Singapore, it sounds like a dream holiday. But is there trouble in paradise? Cue a sparkling Singaporean romp through the universal themes of money, love, female rivalry, friendship, and power - especially the power of family.

“Crazy Rich Asians is a rom-com with a difference. Could it be one for your film group to watch and discuss?” says Claire Salisbury, new u3a Subject Adviser for Film. Claire adds “if you are keen on film – any film - and would like to chat, have a question, or would like to send in mini film reviews, do contact me. I’ll be pleased to hear from you.”


Nomadland - Academy Award winner Best Picture 2021

Imagine. You are a teacher, a factory supervisor, a taxi driver, a journalist. You are buying your house with a large mortgage. There’s an economic downturn, your job vanishes, the property market crashes spectacularly. Your home is repossessed and you’re homeless. Your adult children have tiny homes themselves and cannot take you in for long. Your marriage fails. You find more work, but struggle to pay high private sector rents. You cannot make ends meet. You reach retirement. You’ll have a small pension but it will scarcely cover rent, let alone living. The state will not give you any help at all. Then one day you think that, if you stop paying rent, your biggest single expense, you could stay afloat. You can supplement your pension with seasonal work anywhere in the country - because you have a van that you can live in. So you turn your van into your home and you drive away. This is the acclaimed film Nomadland.  Starring Frances McDormand and directed by Chloe Zhao, it tells the true stories of tens of thousands of older Americans.

“Many of us have seen Nomadland or heard of it. Could it be one for your film group to discuss?” says Claire Salisbury, new u3a Subject Adviser for Film. “For instance, in our group the other day we had a lively debate on whether being a ‘nomad’ is a choice or is the nomads’ only option.”

Claire adds “If you are keen on film and would like to chat, or have a question, I’ll be pleased to hear from you. Mini film reviews are welcome too!”  

Nomadland has shown widely in cinemas and may still be at a screen near you. Another way to watch Nomadland is on the Disney streaming channel.

Claire can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or via the Film Subject Advice page at