22 outstanding film and music events in Manchester this October
Manchester skyline

There is plenty to please film and music fans in Manchester this month.

Film events kick off with Grimmfest at The Printworks, there’s a chance to see Benedict Cumberbatch as Hamlet, Michael Fassbender in Macbeth, and if that’s all a bit heavy then check out The Big Lebowski on the big screen.

Music events see gigs from Johnny Marr, the New York Brass Band and The Hoosiers, plus a club night from Mr Scruff, the Girls on Film 3rd birthday party, and a 12-hour Dylanfest.

Here’s our pick of October’s offerings.

1 – 4 Oct: GRIMMFEST

Grimmfest 2015 Printworks poster

The Printworks Odeon will play host to a great line-up of dark, thrilling and chilling movies for the seventh annual Manchester festival of horror, cult, sci-fi and fantasy film – GRIMMFEST. Look out for the world premiere of DXM, a visually stunning, conceptually challenging tale of a sub-atomic struggle of the subconscious staring Sam Neill, as well as the North West premiere of Paul Hyett’s gripping werewolves on a train shocker, Howl. (Thurs 1 – Sun 4 Oct, The Printworks, Withy Grove, M4 2BS – more info)

5 things not to miss at GRIMMFEST 2015

2 Oct: Macbeth

Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard star in Justin Kurzel’s eagerly-anticipated adaptation of “the Scottish play”, in which a duke of Scotland receives a prophecy from three witches that he will become King. (Showing at cinemas across Manchester from Fri 2 Oct.)

3 Oct: Reform Radio launch

Following a successful crowdfunder campaign, the not-for-profit organization Reform Radio is celebrating new beginnings as a full time online radio station with an evening jam-packed full of the city’s best homegrown music, art and spoken word, taking place across two stages in a truly unique venue:  under the railways arches of the First Chop Brewery. (Sat 3 Oct, 7pm – 1am, First Chop Brewery, Unit 3 Trinity Row, Trinity Way, Salford, M3 5EN – more info)

3 Oct: Keep It Unreal with Mr Scruff

Keep It Unreal with Mr Scruff at the controls all night long, serving up a huge melting pot of jazz, soul, hip hop, funk, disco, deep house, reggae, dubstep, afrobeat, breaks, latin and tea. Limited tickets available on the door. (Sat 3 Oct, 10pm, Band on the Wall, 25 Swan St, M4 5JZ – more info)

3 Oct: Girls on Film 3rd birthday

To celebrate turning three, 80s night Girls on Film bring you a Patrick Swayze special. Expect free entry and Babycham before 11pm, Patrick bunting, a cardboard Patrick Swayze cut-out for you to have your picture taken next to, a goody bag filled with Patrick goodies for the best dressed, Dirty Dancing played on the big screen, and music including Duran Duran, Blondie, The Smiths, Bowie, The Human League, Madonna and Depeche Mode. (Sat 3 Oct, The Deaf Institute, 10pm 3am, 135 Grosvenor St, M1 7HE – more info)

4 – 28 Oct: From Caligari to Hitler: Weimar Cinema

This October HOME are presenting a series of films made during the Weimar Republic, the centrepiece of which is a preview screening of Rudiger Suchsland’s exceptional documentary, From Caligari to Hitler, a look at German cinema in the age of the masses. The season includes Nosferatu, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, The Diary of a Lost Girl, and The Golem, revealing a post-World War I Germany in a state of flux. There is a One Hour Intro led by freelance film educator Maggie Hoffgen on Sun 4 Oct. (Sun 4 Oct Mon 28 Oct, HOME, 2 Tony Wilson Place, M15 4FNmore info)

5 Oct: The Big Lebowski

A chance to see the Coen brothers’ 1998 cult crime comedy, loosely inspired by the work of Raymond Chandler and starring Jeff Bridges as Jeff “the Dude” Lebowski, on the big screen. Part of the Flashback Films series of Monday night classics at the ODEON Printworks. (Mon 5 Oct, The Printworks, Withy Grove, M4 2BS – more info)

6 Oct: Manchester Camerata UpClose

Curated by the extraordinary young Norwegian trumpet virtuoso, Tine Thing Helseth, Manchester Camerata’s experimental UpClose series brings The Soundtrack of My Life to Band on the Wall. The set list for this UpClose ranges from Bach to Joni Mitchell. (Tues 6 Oct, 7.30pm, Band on the Wall, 25 Swan St, M4 5JZ – more info)

7 and 8 Oct: Johnny Marr at the Albert Hall

Johnny Marr_JUN14_Colour_Landscape_PHOTO-CREDIT_Jon-Shard

Photo: Johnny Marr c Jon Shard

Manchester legend Johnny Marr will be playing his next hometown show at The Albert Hall on 7 and 8 Oct, with support from Man Made. His live shows have been celebrated for his musical dexterity and impressive vocals, whether playing his solo material or delving into The Smiths’ back-catalogue. (Wed 7 and Thurs 8 Oct, 7pm, Albert Hall, 27 Peter Street, M2 5QR – more info)

8 Oct: Carhartt WIP Radio Tour

Renowned street wear brand, Carhartt WIP is bringing its European Radio on Tour to Manchester for a one-off, pop-up DJ set with Ruf Dug, Sean Canty, Jonny Dub and hosted by Jon K in store. The European tour is only stopping in Manchester and Bristol in the UK before heading onto Ghent, Milan and Verona. (Thurs 8 Oct, 6.30 – 9.30pm, Carhartt WIP, 59-61 Oldham Street, M1 1JR – more info)

9 Oct: New York Brass Band

Hailing from the mean street of York, the 8-piece New York Brass Band are part of a funky brass revolution that is sweeping the nation. The band take its inspiration from contemporary New Orleans musicians but have a repertoire that ranges from Marvin Gaye to George Michael, from Cee-Lo Green to Stevie Wonder with some funky, gritty northern originals thrown in. (Fri 9 Oct, 9.30pm, Matt and Phreds, 64 Tib Street, M4 1LW – more info)

10 Oct: The Amazons

Catch this blistering, melodic rock quartet from Reading in a live show at Sound Control on 10 Oct. Matt, Joe, Elliot and Chris take the aggression of grunge and punk and splice it with melody and harmony. (Sat 10 Oct, 7pm, Sound Control, 1 New Wakefield Street, M1 5NP – more info)

10 Oct: Goodgreef 15th birthday party

10 Oct sees the Goodgreef 15th Birthday all-night show at Victoria Warehouse, with a huge line-up including Eddie Halliwell doing a ‘chosen by you’ classics set, Lisa Lashes back out of hard house retirement, Shan back fully out of DJ retirement for one night only, Marco V, Bryan Kearney – the list goes on! (Sat 10 Oct, 10pm – 7am, Victoria Warehouse, Trafford Wharf Rd, Stretford, M17 1AB – more info)

12 Oct: Suffragette

Carey Mulligan and Helena Bonham Carter star as the foot soldiers of the early feminist movement in this new film about the suffragettes, with Meryl Streep playing the political activist Emmeline Pankhurst, who was born in Moss Side. (Showing at cinemas across Manchester from Mon 12 Oct.)

12 Oct: Who Framed Roger Rabbit

Jessica Rabbit

This 1988 cartoon-live action classic stars Bob Hoskins as private eye Eddie Valiant and Alan Tilvern as cartoon producer R.K. Maroon, with Kathleen Turner providing the voice for Jessica Rabbit, the sultry wife of Maroon’s biggest star Roger Rabbit (Charles Fleischer). Part of the Flashback Films series of Monday night classics at the ODEON Printworks. (Mon 12 Oct, The Printworks, Withy Grove, M4 2BS – more info)

15 Oct: NT Live Hamlet with Benedict Cumberbatch

National Theatre Live will broadcast this eagerly awaited production of Hamlet live to cinemas on 15 Oct. Academy Award nominee Benedict Cumberbatch takes on the title role in Shakespeare’s great tragedy, in this critically acclaimed production directed by by Lyndsey Turner (Posh, Chimerica). (Thurs 15 Oct, broadcast live to cinemas across Manchester – more info)

16 Oct: Oh, Word? Gareth Brooks at Hula

Start your weekend in hedonistic style at Tiki drinking den Hula, with DJ Gareth Brooks bringing you RnB and Old School Hip Hop beats until 4am. (Every Fri and Sat night, 9pm till 4am, Hula, 11 Stevenson Square, M1 1DB – more info)

17 Oct: James Taylor Quartet

Since being championed by John Peel way back in 1986, The James Taylor Quartet have set the standard for the coolest sounds in funky acid jazz. Catch them live at Band on the Wall on 17 Oct. (Sat 17 Oct, 7.30pm, Band on the Wall, 25 Swan St, M4 5JZ – more info)

22 Oct: F//ck Th//rsday

Manchester’s biggest student night, F//ck Th//rsday attracts over 1000 clubbers, with three rooms of music – indie/rock n roll, R n B/hip hop, and House & garage with Ibiza Rocks DJ Nicola Bear. It’s 99p entry before midnight, with £1 selected drinks all night. (Factory251, 118 Princess Street, M1 7EN – more info)

24 Oct: UK Dylanfest

Levenshulme celebrates the forthcoming 50th anniversary of Bob Dylan’s notorious 1966 Free Trade Hall gig with a 12 hour Dylanfest for Oxfam with film screenings, quizzes and more. During the evening a host of live bands and acoustic acts will take to the stage. (Sat 24 Oct, 12pm – 12am, Fred’s Ale House, 843 Stockport Road, Levenshulme, M19 3PW – more info)


Bond is back. Daniel Craig re-teams with Skyfall director Sam Mendes for the latest instalment of the Bond franchise, in which 007 comes up against the shadowy forces of sinister organisation SPECTRE. (Showing at cinemas across Manchester from 26 Oct).

30 Oct: The Hoosiers

Formed in Berkshire via Indianapolis in 2007, The Hoosiers received critical acclaim upon releasing singles Worried About Ray and Goodbye Mr A which saw their debut album The Trick To Life reaching number one in the UK Albums Chart. Catch them live with special guests at Night & Day on 30 Oct. (Fri 30 Oct, Night & Day, 26 Oldham Street, M1 1 JN – more info)

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Main photo: Stacey MacNaught / Flickr / CC