Centrepiece: What a picture

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The Independent Culture
The only time schoolkids ventured into a political dalliance was when they daubed little 'A's inside circles on the playground wall. What did anarchy mean? Nobody knew. But it was big and bad and Johnny Rotten sang about it, so it had to be worth a lunchtime detention. The Pistols split up and the kids grew up, but the movement got a brief shot in the arm from Crass, whose endorsement of anarchy proved lucrative enough to enable them to offload thousands of pounds onto various anarchist organisations, some of whom allegedly took the dosh and bolted. 'That's the trouble with many anarchists,' an insider said. 'They get a bit of money and then they're not so keen on anarchy anymore.'

Starting today, there's a festival - entitled 'Anarchy in the UK: 10 Days that Shook the World' - for all those who kept the faith, so don't expect to see John Lydon there. Five-hundred events have been lined up for the festival, which claims to be the biggest of its kind in this country, including book fairs, comedy, music and the intriguingly named 'art mayhem'.

It's the London Film-makers' Co-op, though, who are providing the festival's backbone with a short season of films highlighting the various manifestations of anarchist thought in cinema.

The work ranges from the revered - a double bill of Lindsay Anderson's If. .

. (right) and one of its influences, Jean Vigo's entrancing Zero de Conduit -to the rare - The Wobblies, about the revolutionary American socialists who were the first American Union to put racial equality into practice. The saddest thing about the season's most notorious film - Julien Temple's The Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle - is not the sight of Sid and Nancy taking the fast toboggan to hell, or even Irene Handl getting caught up in the whole palaver, but the fact that most people remember it only for the spectacle of Malcolm McLaren bearing his all in the bath. This was what your parents were frightened of.

The London Film-makers' Co-op, 42 Gloucester Ave, Camden NW1 8JD (071-586 8516) to 31 Oct

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