Preview of Irish Film @ Cork Film Festival

| October 26, 2017 | Comments (0)

The 62nd Cork Film Festival takes place across 10 days from November 10-19 2017. This year’s festival will screen more than 200 films, with 50 countries being represented. Screenings take place at The Everyman, Gate Cinema and Triskel Christchurch. For full details and tickets visit corkfilmfest.org.

For Irish film fans we’ve gathered together the Irish screenings for your diary.

 

The Man Who Invented Christmas (Bharat Nalluri)

October, 1843. Charles Dickens (Dan Stevens) is struggling after a run of flops have left him both financially strapped and bereft of ideas. He’s distracted from his wife and children, irritated by his leech of a father and grumpy with his best friend and advocate John Foster (Justin Edwards). Yet the lively streets of London are a place where inspiration can strike in any moment, and Dickens has an idea to write a book set at Christmas about an unloved miser. This premise doesn’t do enough to excite his publishers, so Dickens goes it alone, a decision which plunges him into more debt and uncertainty. And that’s before he meets the characters who will inhabit his definitive work. The Man Who Invented Christmas is dynamic festive fare, propelled along by a sparkling comic performance from Stevens, and features an impressive supporting cast that includes Christopher Plummer, Jonathan Pryce and Simon Callow.

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In the Name of Peace: John Hume (Maurice Fitzpatrick)

From his beginnings in the civil rights movement in the 1960’s to his crowning achievement the Northern Ireland Peace Process, John Hume achieved so much by seeking peaceful solutions. The cast of international heavyweights assembled here speaks volumes of Hume’s political prowess and the esteem in which he is held. Former American Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton as well as British Prime Ministers Tony Blair and John Major are among a plethora of diplomats, civil servants, senators and congressmen featured who cast light on Hume’s rise and his successful strategy of getting America behind his cause.

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A programme of short films made in and about Cork from the collections of the IFI Irish Film Archive will show Cork city and country life from the 1900s to the 1970s. The programme will include The Irish Riviera (a 1930s travelogue); Louis Marcus’ Rhapsody of a River (1965); a compilation of Cork newsreel stories (1920s to ‘60s); Larry a 1959 adaptation of a Frank O Connor story; and a sparkling brace of Cork-themed advertisements from the 1970s.

Introduced by Sunniva O’Flynn of the Irish Film Institute.

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“We should never forget what happened and we should never forget for the simple reason that it’s not repeated again.”– Tomi Reichental

As a Holocaust survivor, Tomi Reichental’s story is one of resilience. But it is also a cautionary tale of the ease with which humanity can sleepwalk towards the abyss.

Beginning with a celebration of his 80th birthday in a mosque, Recihental journeys across Europe where he witnesses the disturbing rise of fascism in his birthplace Slovakia; talks compassionately on the plight of Syrian refugees; and finds commonality with survivors of the Srebrenica genocide.

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Ostensibly, the biopic of Irish traditional (sean nós) singer Joe Heaney, though director Pat Collins (Silence, 2012) is establishing a reputation as an unconventional, uncompromising filmmaker with singular vision, and the film emerges as something far more elusive. Shot in timeless black and white and hovering somewhere between documentary and dramatisation, here is a life in fragments: a childhood in Carna, County Galway; leaving the family home, like so many before and since; time spent in America is no escape from roots. There is great music throughout, with performances from Lisa O’Neill, Damien Dempsey, Seamus Begley and sean nós singers Micheál O’Confhaola and Pól Ó Ceannabháin.

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Rural Ireland, sometime in the 1920s. Rachel (Charlotte Vega) and Edward (Bill Milner) are 18-year-old orphaned twins unable to leave the dilapidated manor that has been in their family for centuries due to an ancient curse. Strict rules mean that they can’t be outside of the house after midnight, nor can they invite anyone else in. While fearful Edward abides to these requirements, Rachel is more provocative and daring, particularly when Sean (Eugene Simon) has returned to the neighbouring village from fighting abroad. The latest film from director Brian O’Malley (Let Us Prey) is a sumptuous gothic horror with an impressive young cast.

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Shy and awkward, Wild West obsessed Billy Burns’ cheerful cowboy fixation masks the scars of a childhood tragedy. Befriended by local hothead Ciaran and his girlfriend Laura, Billy becomes bruised by his unrequited attraction to her and hurt by her volatile boyfriend. Proudly wearing his love of Cowboy movies, Conaty beautifully captures the bored flinty small talk of rural barflies while deftly balancing moments of sadness with levity, never more so than with an ending that, while downbeat, is in its own unique way, and in that great Western phrase, elegiac.

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Writing Home (Nagham Abboud, Alekson L. Dall’Armellina, Miriam Velasco)

Having failed as a serious novelist Daniel Doran achieves success and recognition when he turns his hand to pulpy potboilers. An international bestseller, Daniel ’s celebrity sees him enjoy the decadent party lifestyle, but it also turns him into an arrogant preening figure. When his father falls ill he returns to his rural roots and to a family who are not all entirely willing to forgive him. An encounter with an old flame eventually helps him reassess his priorities.

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Photo City (John Murphy, Traolach Ó Murchú)

Rochester, NY is synonymous with the iconic Kodak Tower, which proudly watches over the city. But in a world now dominated by digital technology and imaging, where does that leave, not just photography as we knew it, but also the city that is referred to as the image capital of the world?  Photo City meets a variety of people from analogue devotees to hard-nosed picture editors and explores their relationship to photography and image making. In a place marked by economic decline, it finds stories of hope and resilience.

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Michael Inside (Frank Berry)

 

Michael is a luckless 18-year-old who is misfortunate to be sent to prison.

Vulnerable and alone, Michael is taken under the wing of a score-settling older prisoner (a quietly unhinged performance by Moe Dunford).

With nary a hint of a soapbox and with deep humanity, Berry portrays a penal system that extends beyond the prison walls.

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Short Film Programmes

11/11/2017
11:45
Irish Shorts 1 – It’s good to talk
The Gate Cinema
13/11/2017
16:30
Irish Shorts 2 – Don’t go into the woods
The Gate Cinema
15/11/2017
14:00
Irish Shorts 3 – Poetic Voices
The Gate Cinema
16/11/2017
12:00
Irish Shorts 4 – Dreams and Memories
The Gate Cinema
17/11/2017
13:00
Irish Shorts 5 – Documentary Portraits
The Gate Cinema
18/11/2017
13:30
Irish Shorts 6 – Family Adventures
The Gate Cinema
18/11/2017
16:00
Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board World Premiere Shorts
The Everyman Theatre
19/11/2017
15:00
Best Of Cork Shorts Programme
The Everyman Theatre

 

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