The British director Mike Leigh has been making critically acclaimed films and plays for 50 years. He is perhaps best known for his collaborative, improvisation-led approach, which involves rehearsing with an ensemble cast over an extended period of time. Much like real life, a Mike Leigh film is recalled not in chronological plot terms, but in single, impressionistic shots that contain everything there is to know: a mother standing in the doorway of her teenage daughter’s bedroom in Life Is This story is from Kinfolk Issue Forty-One Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 15 A Creative Escape Leaving your usual environment and venturing out into nature can often lead to bright ideas and a refreshed imagination. Arts & Culture Issue 22 Theresa Traore Dahlberg When Theresa Traore Dahlberg realized that she couldn’t relate to narratives about women in West African films, she decided to make her own. Arts & Culture A New Wave: Films for a New Year We select five films to begin a sublime new year. Arts & Culture Breaking From Convention: Fernand Léger A significant piece of experimental filmmaking, Ballet Mécanique takes the viewer into a realm that transcends the rigid pattern of rational thought. Arts & Culture Issue 23 Elisa Humble, hard-working and taking on Hollywood: Rising actor Elisa Lasowski talks to Pip Usher. Arts & Culture 2017 Berlinale: Five Films The 67th Berlinale is slated to serve up a host of noteworthy premieres. Jack Howard of Berlin Film Society selects his favorites.