Ali & Ava

Clio Barnard

United Kingdom, 2021 / 95 min / English OV with French & Dutch subt. / Drama

Ali and Ava meet and instantly feel drawn to each other. A deep connection between them starts to grow, despite Ava’s troubled past relationship and Ali’s turmoil at the breakdown of his marriage.

Sat 12/03 19:00 Cinémathèque ENG OV with FR/NL subt Public

“Barnard’s film is an essay in acceptance and love.” Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian, 11/7/2021

“Ali & Ava is Clio Bernard’s most welcoming film so far, spearheaded by two soulful, likeable performances. Rushbrook anchors it all as the big-hearted Ava, while Akhtar’s jovial vibes and ready zingers soften a lingering melancholy that Barnard eventually dispels altogether in a big hug of a finale. It’s cheesy, sure, but it’ll leave you with a spring in your step.” Phil de Semlyen, Time Out, 11/7/2021

“The glow of love makes this a very beautiful watch.” Fionnuala Halligan, Screendaily, 11/7/2021

“Clio Barnard's film is an atypical romantic tale set in Bradford that is full of song and features a standout performance by Adeel Akhtar” Kaleem Aftab, Cineuropa, 15/7/2021

“The performances make this worthwhile. Lovely, intimate cinematography by upcoming DP Ole Bratt Birkeland is a strong technical element, as is a bright, eclectic soundtrack that might persuade some that electronic dance music can be romantic.” Leslie Felperin, Hollywood Reporter, 23/9/2021

“All in all, Ali & Ava is a charmer: Barnard’s most accessible and hopeful film to date.” Anna Smith, Deadline, 11/7/2021

  • Best actor (Adeel Akhtar) British Independent Film Awards, 2021 (United Kingdom)
  • Best music, British Independent Film Awards, 2021 (United Kingdom)
  • Narrative & Animated Feature Winner, ReFrame, 2021 (Canada)
Cast & Credits
Adeel Akhtar, Claire Rushbrook, Ellora Torchia, Shaun Thomas, Natalie Gavin, Mona Goodwin, Krupa Pattani, Vinny Dhillon, Tasha Connor, Macy Shackleton, Ariana Bodorova, Sarlota Nagyova, Sienna Afsar, Uzair Ali, Abid Yaqoob, Rashid Hussain, Kamal Kaan
Clio Bernard
Ole Bratt Birkeland
Maya Maffioli
Stéphane Collonge, Celina Norris
Harry Escott
BBC Films, BFI Film Fund, Moonspun Films
Altitude Film Sales

Clio Barnard was born in Otley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. She is a director and producer, known for The Arbor (2010) and Dark River (2017). In 2013 she was hailed as a significant new voice in British cinema for her film The Selfish Giant, which premiered in the Director's Fortnight section of the Cannes film festival.

  • 2021 – Ali & Ava
  • 2017 – Dark River
  • 2013 - The Selfish Giant
  • 2010 – The Arbor (Documentaire / Documentary / Dokumentarfilm)
  • 2006 – Dark Glass (short) 2003 – Flood (short)
  • 2003 – Flood (short)
  • 2002 – Random Acts of Intimacy (TV Short)
  • 2000 – Lambeth Marsh (Short) (Documentaire / Documentary / Dokumentarfilm)