Eleanor McSherry reports from the ‘Irish Stories’ Shorts Screening at the Kerry Film Festival.
The Irish Stories Shorts Screening presented 6 stories that had an Irish theme to them, covering the auld Irish stories of the mean teacher, coming home after emigration, coming out, losing your child in an odd place, reflection and mid-life crisis.
The films screened were: The Boring Diary of Frances Noone – Director Cara Holmes, Homecoming – Director Sinéad O’Loughlin, Lily – Director Graham Cantwell, Gridlock – Director Ian Hunt Duffy, Pause – Director Niamh Heery and Wifey Redux – Director Robert McKeon.
Three deserve special mention: Homecoming, Lily and Gridlock.
Homecoming, ‘a young man struggles to find his place in life after returning to Ireland’. It is a poignant take on the subject of emigration, family, opportunities lost and how austerity affected rural areas. It’s a very relevant film in the times we live in and is well written. The acting was spot-on with a great performance from David Greene. This film deservedly won the best ‘Irish Narrative’ award at the festival and I think that director Sineád Loughlin is one to look out for in the future.
Lily, ‘is a girl with a secret on the cusp of becoming a young woman, is faced with the greatest challenge of her life’. It is a ‘coming out’ story but told in a very different way. Without wanting to give too much away, it shows that since the vote on marriage equality not too much has changed. I was expecting something that was going to be clichéd and done before, but was pleasantly surprised. It was shot well with good performances from Clara Harte and Dean Quinn. It was a very brave script.
Lastly, Gridlock, ‘when a little girl goes missing in a traffic jam, her father forms a desperate search party and soon everyone is suspected’. It stars the rising star that is Moe Dunford and is a ‘wow’ film. A thriller, it starts with that age-old story of telling your child to stay where they are and they just don’t. I was totally clueless about where the film was going and just when I thought I’d figured it out, it spun me a 180 degrees. It was such a clever and well executed script. Well done to Ian Hunt Duffy and co.!
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‘Irish Stories’ Shorts Screening took place on Saturday, 22nd October at 1.30pm in the Killarney Cinema.
The Kerry Film Festival took place from the 19th to the 23rd of October 2016.