The important role of the silver screen

Grandma Lorna highlights the work of Tongues of Fire, a not-for-profit organisation with the objective of providing a platform for independent film and arts with a link to south Asia – which is supported with regular donations from Solo Expenses though its Giving Back initiative.

“Have you seen this?” Grandma Lorna wanted to know, looking up from her iPad.

“Halloween grossed almost $92m in its first three days.”

“But it’s not Halloween yet; that’s two weeks away,” said Grandad Ron.

“Not that Halloween; the film called Halloween. You know, Jamie Lee Curtis? Judy Greer? $92m in three days. Not a bad return on investment, that, is it? Biggest figure ever for a horror film.”

Grandad Ron paused in washing his paintbrush in the sink. Surveying the mess he was making, he hurried tried to clean it up before it was seen. “Tip of the iceberg,” he said, hoping to prevent his wife from noticing the paint. “Cinema is a powerful medium, but it’s only the top films that make that kind of money. And they’re about entertainment. Did you know that in the Twenties, when people went to the cinema far more than they do now, studios had to churn out films so fast that they were often quite poor – and so were the cinema owners; keeping a cinema profitable was a tough act, and many couldn’t do it,” he said. “For every huge grossing film, there are many, many, more that aren’t, even today.”

Why Tongues of Fire is important
Lorna favoured him with one of her stern looks. “You’re mansplaining again. You know, instructing me about things I already know, because we’ve read the same books.” She went on: “Cinema is a powerful tool, and if it’s freed from having to justify itself financially – and why should everything be about money – then it can do an important job. That’s why it’s so good that Solo Expenses has chosen Tongues of Fire as one of the good causes it supports with regular donations from the profits of its expense management app.

“The latest things they’ve done is to champion women. It was an initiative called F Rated, which I think was clever. It’s really topical; as they say, the topic of gender equality is showing no sign of slowing down. The organisers say they’re sticking up for women, and that’s reflected in its line-up this year with tales of fierce heroines taking a stand, seeking revenge, taking control, and refusing to accept injustice. And speaking of injustice and taking control, did you think I hadn’t noticed the mess you’re making? I can’t imagine how you spread such a little bit of paint over such a big area. Honestly. You should get a little white spirit on that sink. That would clean it up a treat. And don’t think you’re leaving it until it’s really clean – or using my towels when you think you’ve finished, either. Next time I want anything painting, we’ll get a little man in…”

Picture: Tongues of Fire web site