‘Citizen Kane’ and ‘The Magnificent Ambersons’ on 35mm @ IFI

Citizen Kane_post

July’s Hangover Lounge at the IFI marks the centenary of Orson Welles’ birth with an unmissable double bill on July 26th. It’s a chance to spend an indulgent afternoon at the cinema combining a tasty brunch from the IFI Café Bar with two of Welles’ finest works from 35mm prints.

Citizen Kane (14.00), Welles’ debut, is one of the most influential films ever made. Following the death of newspaper magnate Charles Foster Kane, a reporter interviews those who knew him, trying to find the man behind the legend.

In what would become a regular occurrence throughout Welles’ career, The Magnificent Ambersons (16.15), in which the fortunes of the titular family suffer a decline in the age of the automobile, was hampered by studio interference. It is to his credit that what remains is regarded as one of his best works.

Booking is available in person at the IFI Box Office or on 01 679 5744 only and is not available online.

                                Hair of the Dog:                Brunch + Double Bill – €21
                                Pick-me-up:                       Brunch + Single Film – €16
                                Just the Tonic:                  Double Bill- €13
                                Quick Refresher:              Single Film – normal IFI prices

Check out the menu online HERE

*Brunch is served 12-4pm. Terms, conditions and supplements apply to this offer.


Call For: Archivist at IFA


Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a full-time fixed term position as an archivist employed by the Irish Film Archive (IFA), but based in part in the National Library of Ireland (NLI). The candidate will undertake an assessment of the collection and to catalogue it to archival standards with a view to making this archive one of the primary sources for the history of film-making and cinema in Ireland available to researchers.

Main Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Full cataloguing / processing of the Liam O’Leary collection to archival standards
  • Contributing to the development and implementation of policies and procedures which will ensure long term preservation and access to the collection
  • Identification of material that requires conservation work and  making recommendations for future archival storage and preservation of non document materials
  • Assisting in the promotion of the collection eg.  through publication, online and presentations
  • Other duties appropriate to the post as may be assigned from time to time

Click here for a complete Job Description (PDF).

Closing Date: Friday July 17th 2015 at 5pm


IFI Ireland on Sunday Interview: Sinéad O’Brien, director of Blood Fruit


This month’s Ireland on Sunday features Sinéad O’Brien‘s documentary Blood Fruit.

Earlier this year Adam McPartlan spoke to Sinéad at the Capital Irish Film Festival about her film, which tells the story of the Dunnes Stores strikers in 1980’s Dublin.

Mary Manning, a 21-year-old Dunnes Stores checkout girl, refused to sell two Outspan grapefruits under direction from her union in support of the anti-apartheid struggle. She and ten other supporters were suspended and a strike ensued. The 11 knew little about apartheid and assumed they’d be back to work before long but the arrival on the picket line of activist Nimrod Sejake changed everything, setting the strikers on a path they could never have expected.


Blood Fruit screens on Sunday, 5th July 2015 at 13.00 at the IFI as part of its Ireland on Sunday monthly showcase for new Irish film.

Strikers Mary Manning and Cathryn O’Reilly will take part in a post-screening Q&A.

Tickets for Blood Fruit are available now from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or online at www.ifi.ie



IFI & Experimental Film Club: Zorns Lemma


May 26th @ 6.30pm
IFI, Temple Bar, 6 Eustace St, Dublin.


To mark their 50th programme, the Experimental Film Club highlight the work of Hollis Frampton at the IFI. Frampton remains a highly influential figure in terms of both his filmmaking and his writings and his 1970 seminal work Zorns Lemma.

Daniel Fitzpatrick, Aoife Desmond, Alan Lambert and Alice Butler will participate in a post-screening discussion on Frampton’s experimental film. The panel will also discuss EFC’s legacy to date and its possible futures.

About the film:
“Imagine an eye unruled by man-made laws of perspective, an eye unprejudiced by compositional logic, an eye which does not respond to the name of everything but which must know each object encountered in life through an adventure of perception” – Stan Brakhage.


Book tickets here


IFI and Bottlenote Music present The Sound of Silents

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The Sound of Silents: Short silent Dublin films dating as far back as 1897 reinvigorated with accompaniment from Bottlenote Music at the IFI on April 10th (20.30) & 11th (13.00)

The IFI have teamed up with Bottlenote Music, with the support of Dublin City Council’s MusicTown 2015, to dig deep into the IFI Irish Film Archive to present short silent Dublin films with live improvised scores from five leading contemporary musicians; Eoghan Neff, Seán Mac Erlaine, Shane Latimer, Jack McMahon and Sean Carpio.

The musicians will breathe new life into these old films with a range of soundscapes from traditional to electronic, using woodwind, percussion, turntables, fiddle and electric guitar. The films include Alexander Promio’s pulsating train journey from Westland Row to Dun Laoghaire (1897); Liam Ó Laoghaire’s ethereal Dance School (1943); and the Junior Film Society’s Boy Wanted (1940s).

Sunniva O’Flynn, Head of Irish Film Programming at the IFI, said ‘We are pleased to work with such an accomplished group of musicians: to witness their respect for the integrity of the original work and to share their enthusiasm for infusing these once silent films with a new life. The programme is a tremendously varied one, including fiction and non-fiction, amateur and professional, colour and black and white film – all made in Dublin between 1897 and the 1960s.  None of the films are made in studio but out and about on the streets of Dublin and all will be a treat not just for nostalgists but for those fascinated by the evolution of Dublin, its architecture and its inhabitants.’


Tickets for From the Vaults: The Sound of Silents on April 10th (20.30) & 11th (13.00) are available from the IFI on 01 679 3477 or at www.ifi.ie.


IFI and The Alzheimer Society of Ireland Panel discussion

On Sat 7th March following the 15.45 screening of Still Alice, the IFI and The Alzheimer Society of Ireland will host a panel discussion to explore issues raised by the film, and broaden out to look at the value of film and the arts for both awareness raising and therapeutic purposes for people living with Alzheimer’s and dementia in Ireland, 4000 of whom are under 65.

Chaired by director and producer Anna Rodgers, the panel will feature Tina Leonard, Head of Advocacy at The Alzheimer Society of Ireland; Hilary Moss, Director of the National Centre for Arts and Health; Helen Rochford Brennan from Sligo who was diagnosed three years ago with early onset Alzheimer’s;  Ronan Smith, Advocate for the Irish Dementia Working Group; and Bairbre Ann Harkin, of the Butler Gallery Kilkenny. The Butler Gallery Kilkenny is a founding member of Azure Partnership in collaboration with Age & Opportunity and The Alzheimer Society of Ireland. Helen Rochford Brennan and Ronan Smith are both members of the ASI Irish Dementia Group whose aim is to be the voice for dementia, to raise public awareness of the condition.

Still Alice tells the story of Alice Howard, a linguistics professor at Columbia University and a leading expert in her field. She lives in a plush Manhattan apartment with her surgeon husband John and has three adult children. She is happy, healthy and seems to have landed comfortably in mid-life, until she begins to forget things. Adapted from Lisa Genova’s 2007 bestselling novel, Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland’s film is a deeply affecting drama that is centred on Julianne Moore, who is quite brilliant in the lead role.

Supported by a cast that includes Alec Baldwin, Kate Bosworth and Kristen Stewart, Moore cements her reputation as one of the finest film actors of her generation and is thoroughly deserving of the awards and acclaim her performance here has attracted.

Still Alice + Panel Discussion is at 15.45 on Sat 7th March 2015. Still Alice is on release at the IFI on Friday 6th March 2015. To book tickets call 01 679 3477 or visit www.ifi.ie.


An Irish Visionary of Silent Cinema at IFI


Mare Nostrum was the favourite film of Rex Ingram, the prolific, world-renowned Irish director of the silent film era. The restored film will be shown on the 9th December at 18.30 as part of the IFI’s From The Vaults strand and will be presented with live musical accompaniment from 3Epkano and an introduction from Ruth Barton, author of a new study of Ingram, Rex Ingram: Visionary Director of the Silent Screen.

Noted for his charisma, talent, and striking good looks, Dublin-born director Rex Ingram (1893−1950) is ranked alongside D. W. Griffith, Marshall Neilan, and Erich von Stroheim as one of the greatest artists of the silent cinema. He became one of the most popular directors in Hollywood, directing smash hits such as The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (1921), The Prisoner of Zenda (1922), and Scaramouche (1923).
An exciting World War 1 story made in 1926 about a Spanish merchant sailor and a beautiful spy (played by Ingram’s wife, Alice Terry), Mare Nostrum features many Ingram trademarks such as his eye for scenery, his love of grotesque characters and his exploration of supernatural themes. This beautifully restored, tinted 35mm print, presented by arrangement with Photoplay Productions and Warner Bros, is a reminder of what an extraordinarily talented filmmaker Ingram was.
3epkano are a Dublin-based collective who are dedicated to producing original soundtracks for silent and avant-garde cinema. Founded in early 2004 by Matthew Nolan, they have played numerous headline shows in Ireland and the US to great critical acclaim. Their score for Mare Nostrum has been created specially for the IFI screening and has been funded by the Trinity College Dublin Visual and Performing Arts Fund.

Tickets for From the Vaults: Mare Nostrum are €15 and are available now from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or www.ifi.ie


Competition: Win Tickets to ’71 at IFI Plus Q&A with Director & Writer



We have a pair of tickets to give away to a special screening of the highly acclaimed ‘71 at 18.30 on October 17th at the IFI. The director Yann Demange and writer Gregory Burke will participate in a Q&A session following the screening.

It is 1971, and with escalating tensions in Northern Ireland, Gary Hook (Jack O’Connell) is one of a number of young English soldiers sent to keep the peace on the streets of Belfast. Clueless about the politics of the place and ill-served by his commanding officers, Hook is left to fend for himself in an unfamiliar, unforgiving city after a routine house search descends into a chaotic riot and he is separated from the rest of his unit.

As night comes down and the soldier attempts get back to the army base, Hook’s disorientating odyssey brings him into contact with Unionist and Republican paramilitary units, as well duplicitous forces stoking the flames of conflict, waging their own dirty war. Acclaimed TV director Yann Demange delivers a notable debut feature, an exhilarating action movie that has more in common with the work of Walter Hill or John Carpenter than it does with other depictions of The Troubles in recent British cinema.

To be in with a chance of winning answer the following question:

Jack O’Connell starred in which 2013 prison film?

Email your answer to filmireland@gmail.com by 2pm Friday, 17th October when the winner will be selected by the Film Ireland Hat.

You can book tickets for the event here


Interview: Alice Butler, Beyond the Bechdel Test Season Programmer



The IFI recently hosted a Beyond the Bechdel Test season, which presented a selection of films from a range of directors who have explored complex, nuanced ties between women that are not merely a feature of one scene, but an integral aspect of the films’ narratives. Ruairí Moore sat down with  programmer Alice Butler to discover more about The Bechdel Test, the process of selecting films of a high quality that pass the test and gender equality in film.


First off, would you like to briefly explain the Bechdel Test, and perhaps why it was chosen as a theme for the season?


The Bechdel Test is named after American cartoonist Alison Bechdel who had a successful comic strip called Dykes to Watch Out For which ran from the early ’80s right up until 2008.  It was in a 1985 issue of this comic strip that Bechdel featured a segment called ‘The Rule’ in which two female characters mull over the idea of going to the cinema together. During this conversation – which takes place as the pair stroll by a series of cinemas, signalled by sensationalist posters for films each one more pointedly male oriented than the next – the first character explains to the other that she has devised a rule whereby she only goes to see a film if it has at least two female characters who talk to each other about something besides a man.  Seeing as none of the films available look as though they have a chance of meeting these requirements, the women decide to skip the cinema and go home instead.  The Bechdel Test was originally presented then as a kind of gag but it struck a chord with film theorists, critics and researchers who saw in it a practical device for assessing films in terms of gender bias.


Using the Bechdel Test as a central reference point for the season was a means of provoking thought and discussion about gender disparity in cinema in an approachable and not entirely humourless way.  The Bechdel Test has its flaws but it provides audiences with a simple set of questions to apply to films in order to start thinking about the often over-simplified representation of women on screen.  Ultimately the test encourages viewers to consider the significance of how both women and men are being drawn in cinema.  The test is also an interesting phenomenon in and of itself – the fact that it first arose in a conversation between two comic strip characters gives it a grass-roots like quality.  The concept wasn’t generated by a team of film experts, it has an unofficial, vox-pop like character and its acclaim indicates a widespread dissatisfaction with the kinds of stories and characters that cinema can too often prioritise.


It’s probably fair to say that, though useful, applying the Bechdel Test alone can be a rather simplistic model for viewing the representation of women in film – for example, a film with an absolutely heinous representation of women might still pass it in a single exchange. What other criteria did you apply in selecting films to screen?


I agree that the Bechdel test is not foolproof and certainly has its drawbacks. As you say, a film might pass the test and still fail to offer anything of value in terms of its representation of women. On a basic level though, it prompts audiences to think, and what is more, to question what they are watching.


In terms of other criteria, I wanted the selection to reflect as wide a range of filmmaking cultures and styles as possible. The diversity in the season was an attempt to reflect the diversity that was integral to Alison Bechdel’s comic strip. It was also important that the season was made up of examples of great cinema in which female experience played a crucial role. A significant priority was that the films would be of interest to both men and women. This was to suggest that cinema is a domain where the perspectives of women and men should be explored equally – it was a statement in its own way. We are taught to expect universal stories to be told or carried by men. I wanted this season to be made up of what I felt were universal stories that were driven by female characters. A lot of these terms and ideas became familiar to me through reading Laura Mulvey’s work, in particular Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema, her seminal essay from 1975.


It was an interesting exercise to look for films of a high quality that also managed to pass the test. A pattern that emerged pretty naturally was that very often the films that passed and that felt as though they would be of interest to a wide range of audiences were concerned with issues relating to representation. This is an important aspect of Nicole Holofcener’s Lovely & Amazing, where Emily Mortimer’s character plays an actress unsure of how she is being presented as a star, it’s also key to Agnès Varda’s Cléo from 5 to 7 where Corinne Marchand’s pop singer feels she’s being sold as something she’s not, it’s certainly a major part of Irish artist Sarah Browne’s excellent film Something from Nothing and in Lizzie Borden’s Born in Flames, the media is seen to misrepresent the plight of women as well as other marginalised groups in order to suppress their demands. In all these films there is an interest in the struggle to reconcile the real experiences of women with how these are represented or distorted by others.


The programme sees Irish female filmmakers take a prominent role, but it is not limited to indigenous filmmakers, or even women for that matter. With many claiming that there are “men’s films” and “women’s films”, what kind of themes unified those included in the season of films that ultimately transcended the gender or nationality of the filmmakers behind it?


It’s damaging to think of particular films as being exclusively for men or women.  Cinema shouldn’t be reductive or prescriptive in that way. As I mentioned earlier, it was important that the films in this season would be appealing to both men and women and the only way to achieve this was to include films which say something as much about what it is to be human as what it is to be a man or a woman. All About Eve is about ageing and betrayal, Obvious Child is about friendship and identity, something similar could be said of Girlfriends. Wives is about responsibility and abandon, Yield to the Night about crime and endurance – these are films that can speak to anyone, regardless of gender.


The Swedish Film Institute recently introduced measures requiring all funding to be allocated equally among the genders, which has seen the amount of projects with women writers/producers attached match and even exceed that of men. Do you think something like this could and should be implemented for Irish film?


I have limited knowledge or experience of funding and film production. However, a concerted effort does need to be made in order to even out the balance in terms of gender focus in Irish film. The efforts made in Sweden have been successful so it makes a lot of sense to try and establish something here along the same lines.


Between the Beyond the Bechdel Test season, a panel centred on the issue at the Galway Film Fleadh and the upcoming Feminist Film Festival in Dublin, the issue of gender equality in Irish film seems to be one very much at the forefront today – what would you hope to see happen, going forward?


I would hope to see a greater number of mainstream Irish films with female protagonists. I think this is more likely to happen if there are more women supported in their work in key positions behind the camera, writing scripts, producing and directing films. In order for this to happen, procedures need to be put in place in order to facilitate this and it would be great to see these established in as short a time frame as possible.


Call For: Education Officer for IFI


Illustration: Adeline Pericart

The Irish Film Institute wishes to appoint an Education Officer to work in their busy and forward-looking Education Department on a three-year fixed term contract. The successful applicant will have a teaching qualification and an understanding of film and media education; they will have an interest in developing and delivering programmes particularly with children and young people.

Closing date for Applications: 29th August 2014

Please send letter of application and CV to: jobs@irishfilm.ie

Education Officer: Job Description

Reporting to: Head of Education

Key Relationships: IFI Director, Head of Education, Senior Education Officer, Marketing, Projection;

Purpose of Role: To assist the Senior Education Officer in the development and delivery of the IFI Schools programme; to support the Head of Education in furthering IFI’s Education Strategy and to assist with all activities of the Education Department.

Key Tasks and Responsibilities


  • Assist in the planning, development and delivery of the twice-yearly IFI schools’ programme with the Senior Education Officer within the agreed timeframe & budget and in keeping with curricular requirements
  • Develop further links between IFI Education activities and school curricula through expansion of the programme, creating resources and delivering workshops as directed
  • Research, prepare and deliver introductions and workshops as required and in conjunction with the Senior Education Officer
  • Working closely with the Senior Education Officer, ensure that the film exhibition requirements of the Schools programme are met, including print booking, transport and all related administration
  • Assist the Senior Education Officer in delivering the IFI Education programme to as wide a range of students as possible
  • Produce and publish materials in relation to the above as directed
  • Develop relationships with teachers, arts and education providers and cultural organisations in conjunction with the Senior Education Officer
  • Maintain thorough and efficient records of all Schools activities in conjunction with the Senior Education Officer and of other IFI Education activities as directed


  • Assist the Head of Education in the delivery of special projects concerning film education, media literacy and Continuing Professional Development in the context of the formal education sector.
  • Assist with the delivery of the IFI Family Film Festival, monthly Family screenings and ad hoc education projects that arise from time to time
  • Promote the IFI’s position as leader in film education and media literacy in schools, and build on relationships with other arts and educational organisations and relevant statutory bodies, in conjunction with the Senior Education Officer.
  • Ensure the development of IFI Education audiences both in and out of school by both increasing numbers and aiming for the highest standard in programming.
  • Maintain a detailed knowledge and understanding of national and international practice in the area of film and media education.
  • Contribute to the development of a cohesive and positive working environment through teamwork, skills sharing and open communication
  • Undertake various administrative duties

Essential Requirements:

  • A teaching qualification and teaching experience in a relevant subject area (eg. English/Art/Media Studies/Humanities/Modern Languages) and knowledge of education sector
  • An interest in working with children and young people
  • A good knowledge of and interest in film and media
  • A proven ability to work as part of a team
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, experience of facilitating workshops & making presentations
  • IT literacy, administration skills
  • A detailed understanding of the Irish education sector, in particular recent initiatives at Junior Cycle
  • Flexibility, Initiative and ability to develop and deliver programmes and events
  • Willingness to travel to venues around the country for IFI Education events

Desirable Requirements

  • Film or Media Studies qualification and/or experience
  • Knowledge of arts-in-education in Ireland
  • Experience of creating teaching resources and/or schemes of work
  • Working proficiency in Irish language

‘Poison Pen’ Screens at IFI


Poison Pen, a new feature film based on a screenplay by internationally renowned author Eoin Colfer (Artemis Fowl), is set to follow up its premiere at the Galway Film Fleadh with an exclusive screening in Dublin at the IFI as part of its Ireland on Sunday season.

P.C. Molloy (Lochlann Ó Mearáin), a Booker-prize-winning author, is coerced into writing for a tabloid gossip magazine. Cultures clash and sparks fly as the cerebral Molloy finds himself immersed in the world of vain celebrities and he begins to fall for his boss (Aoibhinn McGinnity). A smart and savvy romantic comedy, Poison Pen asks questions about the nature of celebrity, integrity and deception.

The directors will participate in a Q&A and Eoin Colfer and the film’s cast and crew will be in attendance. Poison Pen is a production of the Filmbase/Staffordshire University MSc Digital Feature Film Production Course.

Poison Pen screens on Sunday, 31st August 2014 at 18.00

Tickets are on sale here


Diego Quemada-Díez at the IFI



Winner of a specially created ensemble award in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes 2013, upcoming release The Golden Dream about a group of Guatemalans trying to make it across the Mexican border to the U.S.A is a piercing and poetic road movie that deserves the acclaim it has received on the international festival circuit. The IFI is hosting a special Q&A with the film’s director Diego Quemada-Díez on Thursday 26th June at 18.30, the day before the films exclusive release at the IFI from the 27th June.

A group of Guatemalan teenagers attempt to make their way to the U.S.A., dreaming of the better life that the country promises, but they are ill equipped, both physically and emotionally, for the challenges they face getting there. Sara attempts to pass as a boy, thinking that will make her less vulnerable; Juan positions himself as the group’s guide and cheerleader, but he proves himself as naïve as the others; Samuel struggles from the start of the adventure, while Chauk, an indigenous Indian, speaks no Spanish.

Diego Quemada-Díez has previously worked with Ken Loach, and there’s evidence of that in the film’s raw realism and its committed social concerns. Utilising improvisational technique and mixed cast of professional and non-professional cast, it’s a brilliant and effecting debut feature.

Tickets for the Preview + Q&A of The Golden Dream on Thursday 26th June at 18.30 are available now from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477/www.ifi.ie.

Tickets for the exclusive release of The Golden Dream (opens 27th June) at the IFI will be on sale from Monday 23rd June.


Call For: Entries for IFI Stranger Than Fiction


The dates for the 11th edition of IFI Stranger Than Fiction, Dublin’s documentary film festival have just been confirmed as September 25th-28th 2014. The Festival is looking for original and exciting documentary films from Irish and international filmmakers to include in the festival. So if your film fits the bill, now is the time to prepare your entries as submissions are open for Irish and international short documentaries and Irish feature length documentaries with a deadline of 6pm, June 13th 2014.

Festival Director Ross Whitaker said “After a fantastic festival last year with brilliant films including Smash & Grab, Muscle Shoals and Here Was Cuba, over 30 filmmaker guests and large and engaged audiences, I’m looking forward to this year and all of the great documentary submissions that we’ll be receiving.”

Details of the 2014 programme will be announced and go on sale in early August 2014. For the latest details check www.ifi.ie/stf.


IFI Stranger Than Fiction is accepting entries of Irish and international short documentaries (under 20-minutes) and for Irish feature-length documentaries (over 60-minutes). International features are programmed on an invitation-only basis and no entries in this category will be accepted.

All Irish feature-length entries must be Dublin premieres. For short documentaries, no premiere status is required but preference will be given to shorts which would be Dublin premieres so please indicate if this is the case in your submission. Films that have been broadcast on Irish television or on a channel available to Irish television audiences should not be entered and will not be considered. There is no entry fee.

To enter a FEATURE documentary:

Send two non-returnable DVDs of your film to IFI STRANGER THAN FICTION, Irish Film Institute, 6 Eustace St, Temple Bar, Dublin 2, IRELAND.

Include in your package an A4 sheet with the film title, running time, credits (producer, director), a synopsis of the film of less than 300 words. Please also email these details to strangethanfiction@irishfilm.ie along with three high-resolution images from the film.

To enter a SHORT documentary:

Send an online link to strangerthanfiction@irishfilm.ie along with the details mentioned above.


Ken Loach at the IFI


Ken Loach to take part in a public interview at the IFI on the occasion of a major two-month retrospective of his film and television work.

Loach’s work has often had an Irish dimension whether examining the Northern Irish Troubles, either head on in Hidden Agenda (21st May, 18.15) or from a British recruit’s perspective in Looks and Smiles (18th May, 16.00); looking at Irish communities in Britain through characters such as desperate unemployed Manchester –Irish Catholic family-man Bob in Raining Stones (25th May, 16.00), or Loach’s award-winning period exploration of the Irish War of Independence and Civil War The Wind that Shakes the Barley (screening in June). The latter bodes well for his upcoming Irish period drama Jimmy’s Hall (Opens 30th May) which deals with the story of 1930s political activist Jimmy Gralton, and will premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival before its release at the IFI.

Other highlights of the May selection include a free screening of Cathy Come Home, Loach’s daring 1969 exploration of homelessness that proved to be a defining moment in British television and ignited a big debate in British society that helped launch two homelessness charities Crisis and Shelter; the previously suppressed and very rarely seen The Save the Children Fund Film that explored the politics of poverty, class and charities somewhat too controversially (at the time) for the charity that commissioned it; and Kes (5th May, 18.15), one of Loach’s best known works and one of cinema’s greatest and most enduring depictions of childhood.



Ken Loach Season Part 1: Calendar

Up the Junction (FREE EVENT) 3rd May 12.30

Poor Cow – 4th May 16.00

Kes – 5th May 18.15

Family Life – 7th May 18.15

Ken Loach: Public Interview – 8th May 18.30

Cathy Come Home (FREE EVENT) – 8th May 20.15

Black Jack – 11th May 14.00

The Gamekeeper – 14th May 18.30

Which Side Are You On? 17th May 13.30

The Save the Children Fund Film 17th May 14.45

Looks and Smiles 18th May 16.00

Hidden Agenda + Time to Go 21st May 18.15

Riff-Raff 24th May 16.00

Raining Stones 25th May 16.00

Ladybird Ladybird 28th May 18.30


IFI Present: Essential films of the 90s


Essential Cinema is the IFI’s decade-by-decade look at masterpieces of American cinema, programmed in conjunction with The National Film School at IADT. This April it’s time to take a look at the 1990s, with a short programme of the decade’s key titles, each preceded by a short introduction from IADT lecturer, Tom Kennedy.

In filmmaking terms, the 1990s were not a radical decade. Scorsese and Altman did not disappoint with Goodfellas and Short Cuts, but it was relative newcomers such Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, and Wes Anderson who began carving out their own, very different territory. And then the writer/director Minnesota brothers, the Coens, finally achieved a breakout hit withFargo after which ‘police work’ would never be the same.

Revisionist Western Unforgiven (April 1st, 18.15) kicks off Essential Cinema’s look at the decade with a kind of farewell. Directed by and starring Clint Eastwood, the film sees him as a retired gunfighter who has turned his back on killing and wants to live quietly on his farm. But tempted by the old ways, he decides to take one last gun-for-hire job.

Countless memorable scenes and lines combined with the Coens’ meticulously detailed direction gained them a host of new fans and a firm place in contemporary American cinema withFargo (April 8th, 18.30), a gem of a thriller which contrasts the horror of crime with the values of small town life, through the person of indomitable police chief and very pregnant Marge (a storming Frances McDormand).

A screenplay by Charlie Kaufman directed by Spike Jonze was bound to yield something fantastically nutty. Being John Malkovich (April 29th, 18.30), a glimpse at what might be the life of the movie star, as revealed through John Cusack’s failed puppeteer, keeps the viewers on their toes as they try to figure out just who is mocking whom. The genius of the film is that amid the in-jokes and absurd situations there’s a pertinent examination of identity, celebrity and who actually controls our actions.

Tickets are available from Wed 26th March at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or online at www.ifi.ie .


Irish Film gets Global Attention


Irish film gets global attention with filmmakers and performers including Dylan Moran, Hugh O’Conor, Ruth McCabe, Lenny Abrahamson, David McSavage, Pat Collins, Kate O’Toole and Kelly Thornton representing the industry at programmes and festivals across the globe this St. Patrick’s Day season.

IFI International, supported in all its activities by Culture Ireland, gears up for a particularly busy time as St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated throughout the world with Irish cultural programmes and festivals. IFI International’s programme, which runs throughout the year, reflects both contemporary cinema talent and Ireland’s rich film heritage

At the prestigious Barbican Centre in London, there will be a screening of Irish-American silent comedy Come on Over accompanied by pianist, John Sweeney, and uilleann piper, John Devine. IFI Curator Sunniva O’Flynn will be there to introduce this 1922 film to UK audiences for the first time. There’s also a day of Irish shorts at the Prince Charles Cinema in Leicester Square on March16th , in collaboration with Saint Patrick’s Day London, while at the Newcastle AV Festival major Irish documentarian Pat Collins will present his recent films Silence and Tim Robinson: Connemara.

An annual high point in the international celebration of Irish film, the Rome Irish Film Festa opens its 7th edition with The Stag and presents 15 new short films in competition. Guests travelling to Rome include Lelia Doolan (director of Bernadette: Notes on a Political Journey), actor and chairperson of the Galway Film Fleadh Kate O’Toole, and actor Ciaran McMenamin (Made in Belfast). A major retrospective of Irish cinema with Lenny Abrahamson in attendance will take place at the 13th Les Recontres du cinema europeen, an annual showcase of European cinema held in Vannes, France.

The Berlin St. Patrick’s Festival, includes a programme of recent shorts and features presented in collaboration with IFI International and the Screen Directors Guild of Ireland which opens on March 17th.

Across the Atlantic, the Irish Film Festival, Boston, returns for its 14th  year celebrating Irish film in one of the key cities of the diaspora. The Festival’s award winners have already been announced and guests who will attend to receive their awards include director Steph Green and actress Ruth McCabe of Best Breakthrough Feature winner Run and Jump; actor Dylan Moran and director Ian Fitzgibbon of Director’s Choice Short Breakfast Wine; actress Deirdre O’Kane and director Stephen Bradley of Special Jury Prize winner NOBLE and actress Kelly Thornton from the Director’s Choice Feature award-winner Life’s a Breeze. Elsewhere in the U.S Irish filmmaker Moira Tierney presents a programme of Solus Collective films in New Orleans while Solus Nua Arts Centre in Washington DC presents its Irish Popcorn series and the New York Irish Arts Center presents the award-winning animation Moon Man.

Further east, the special guests at the Irish Film Festival, Moscow, a key element of Irish Week in Moscow, will include David McSavage (Savage Eye), Hugh O’Conor (The Stag) and Mark O’Connor (director, King of the Travellers). IFI International will also support the second annual Belgrade Irish Film Festival, introducing Serbian audiences to the best of recent Irish cinema in the presence of Johnny Gogan, with his feature film Black Ice.


‘Aisling Gheal’ Screens at Tradfest

Dónal Ó Céilleachair’s documentary Aisling Gheal will screen at the IFI, Dublin as part of Tradfest this weekend on Saturday 25th January at 3:30pm.

The film quietly observes the participants of a sean-nós singing programme in the Munster Gaeltacht. Focusing on the relationship between renowned singer and teacher Máire Ní Chéileachair and her talented student, 11-year-old Shahira Apraku, the film immerses us in age-old musical traditions while challenging our notions of ‘Irishness’ in the process.

Shahira Apraku and Máire Ní Chéileachair, one of the greatest living sean-nós singers, will perform after the screening on January 25th. 


IFI present: Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll Seasons

In The Realm of the SensesIn the Realm of the Senses, screening Jan 11th 16.10


Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll: the IFI begins 2014 with three months of seasons dedicated to cinematic excess, starting in January with Part 1: Sex


The IFI starts 2014 with three seasons that examine some of the ways cinema has tackled three of society’s greatest vices and most contested pleasures, succinctly summed up in Ian Dury’s famous 1977 lyric that gives this triptych season its title.

The selection for the Sex session mostly come from the 1970s, a period when freedoms won by various liberation movements throughout the world had led to a relaxation of censorship laws in some territories and before the AIDS crisis provoked a more agonised and puritanical approach to representing the sex act in art.

While this group of films includes glorious celebrations of trash such as John Waters’ Female Trouble and head-on explorations of gay culture and relationships such as Frank Ripploch’s Taxi Zum Klo, many of the most memorable explorations of sexual identity of the decade had a decidedly darker tone. Liliana Cavani’s The Night Porter provocatively positioned its exploration of sadomasochism against the backdrop of the Holocaust; Nagisa Ôshima’s In the Realm of the Senses, a graphic account of a lustful true-life affair with shocking consequences became so controversial that it still hasn’t been shown uncut in Japan; and, perhaps most notoriously of all, Pasolini’s final film Salò, or the 12 Days of Sodom, a brutal and powerful depiction of sex used as a means of domination and control, is one of the bleakest and most nihilistic views of nature ever committed to film.

In an age when hardcore pornography is easily available on every mobile phone and the act of buying a pint of milk from the local shop means that highly sexualised images paraded on the magazines stands are unavoidable, it’s perhaps surprising that the films have not lost power to shock and provoke, to intrigue and tantalise, to amuse or appal.

More recent films by John Cameron Mitchell (Shortbus) and Steve McQueen (Shame) are responses to the sex saturation of our times With Alain Guiraudie’s acclaimed cruising film Strangers by the Lake coming in February, and Lars von Trier continuing to tease ahead of revealing the eagerly anticipated Nymphomaniac, to be released in February, sex remains on the brain for some of the world’s most significant filmmakers.


Timed to coincide with the season, January’s From The Vaults screening is I Can’t, I Can’t..., a rarely-seen Irish film written by Lee Dunne which provocatively tackled the contraception debate in Ireland in 1969. When her pregnant mother miscarries her eighth pregnancy and dies on her wedding day, Mady (Tessa Wyatt) refuses to consummate her marriage to Joe (Dennis Waterman) . Subsequent advice from her doctor on contraception leads to a stand-off with her parish priest.

Come back in February for a Drugs hook up and stay tuned for Rock & Roll in March!

Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll Season (Part 1: Sex) Schedule

Don’t Look Now Jan 7th 18.20

In the Realm of the Senses Jan 11th 16.10

Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom Jan 12 16.10

Shortbus Jan 14th 18.20

Female Trouble Jan 18th 20.30

Taxi Zum Klo Jan 19th 18.30

Shame Jan 26th 16.10

From the Vaults: I Can’t, I Can’t… Jan 22nd 18.30

The Night Porter Jan 27th 18.30

The Beast Jan 29th 18.30

Tickets are available now at the IFI Box Office, by telephone on 01 679 3477 or online at www.ifi.ie/sex


Christmas Crackers at the IFI



No other event in the calendar has inspired cinema like Christmas and every film fan has their favourite Christmas film. This December the IFI is screening a great selection of Christmas classics, perfect whether you’re taking a break from the shopping, making a special outing with friends or family or warming up with a mulled wine in the IFI Café Bar.

It’s a Wonderful Life, Frank Capra’s evergreen classic is required viewing at this time of year and is re-released from 13th December. James Stewart is at his most likeable as family man and generous friend George Bailey, in a tough spot on Christmas Eve. Fortunately an angelic higher power intervenes and the subsequent revelations weave a spell so heart-warming that even the most cold-hearted Scrooges can’t withstand. An angelic presence is also a feature of Henry Coster’s 1947 The Bishop’s Wife (Dec 22nd 16.10 & 23rd 18.15), this time in the form of suave Dudley (Cary Grant) guiding the Bishop (David Niven) but finding relations with mortals more complicated than expected.

Judy Garland fans have long found their Christmas fix in Vincente Minnelli’s 1944 musical Meet Me in St. Louis (Dec 20th 18.15 & 21st 16.00). Beloved musical numbers, in particular Garland’s rendition of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, have ensured it remains a Christmas staple.

Michael Curtiz’ White Christmas (Dec 21st & 23rd 13.30) also features a treasury of songs by Irving Berlin (including of course the eponymous mega-classic). Featuring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen, this story of a two pairs of entertainers getting tangled up in love is a must for any musical fan.

Those looking for something cute and cuddly should definitely avoid Gremlins which will be screened in luscious 70mm on Dec 17th at 18.30. Joe Dante’s blend of black comedy and horror set against a Christmas backdrop, established Gizmo and chums as iconic monsters of the 1980s.

So whether you want to relive the triumph of community in Bedford Falls, get a guaranteed White Christmas with Bing Crosby, or go to the dark side with a 70mm screening of the Gremlins there’s something for everyone this Christmas at the IFI.

Tickets are available from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or online at www.ifi.ie.


Pete Walsh Critical Writing Award Announced



The IFI have announced the Pete Walsh Critical Writing Award, a new annual award that is inspired by the late, esteemed IFI programmer. Pete Walsh, who passed away in December 2012, was a central figure at the IFI for 18 years, building an internationally admired film programme, and hugely enriching cinema exhibition and appreciation in Ireland.

IFI Director Ross Keane said: “Last December our dear friend and colleague Pete Walsh passed away. For his anniversary this month, we wanted to mark his passing and legacy. After numerous discussions with Pete’s colleagues and family, two areas consistently emerged that Pete was passionate about – good film writing and seeing as many movies as possible. Because of this, we decided to merge the two and, this December, we are pleased to announce the Pete Walsh Critical Writing Award. We hope this Award will be a fitting tribute to a man who was so passionate about film and shared that enthusiasm with everyone he met.”

Chair of the Judging Panel Tony Tracy said ‘We are delighted to inaugurate this Award in memory of a friend and great cinephile who shaped the experience of film for so many in Dublin and beyond.’

Bridget Mulvey, Pete’s sister, said ‘Throughout Pete’s career he nurtured many young people’s appreciation of film, many of whom continue to work in the field. This Award is a fine way for the IFI to continue to honour his legacy.’

The Pete Walsh Critical Writing Award will be awarded annually to an outstanding piece of critical writing on any one film theatrically screened in Ireland during the previous calendar year (in this case 2013). The winner will be selected by a judging panel consisting of four of Pete’s many friends from the film industry Tony Tracy (Huston School of Film & Digital Media, NUI Galway), Kevin Coyne (Irish Film Institute), Gráinne Humphreys (Jameson Dublin International Film Festival) and Professor Neil Sinyard.

The winning entry will be published in the IFI monthly programme and on the IFI website, while the winner will receive a year’s free entry to films at the IFI.

The closing date for entries will be 5pm on Friday 28th February 2014 and entry is open to anyone resident in Ireland. There is a maximum word count of 1250 words but the IFI anticipates many entries will be more concise. The focus is on film appreciation and criticism rather than academic analysis. It is essential that entrants read the full competition rules and submission guidelines which are available on the IFI website at www.ifi.ie/writingaward.


IFI Education Publish 12-13 Project Report


Media-savvy young people in Ireland need support to make better use of media, report from IFI Education shows


The need for support for young people in Ireland in negotiating and successfully interacting with myriad media platforms available to them fell under the spotlight today with the publication of the 12-13 Project Report by IFI Education. The report , which was funded by the Broadcasting Authority Ireland, highlights the enthusiasm and engagement of the 12-13 age group with both new and more traditional media, and the wide array of skills that this key age-group already have. It also lays down a blueprint for educators to help children develop these important skills.

Launching the report Alicia McGivern, Head of Education at the Irish Film Institute said ‘This is a fast moving area but with the growing importance of media platforms in everyone’s life and especially as new media is the preferred communication tool for young people in Ireland it’s vital that educators find ways of enhancing these skills so they can employ them more creatively and responsibly whilst promoting a culture of online safety. The 12-13 Project Report both shows how Irish children are engaging with the media already in day-to day life and developed five pilot projects that worked with local media like Ocean FM and RTÉ, to show how children’s enthusiasm can be even more fired up by engaging with the ways in which media content is being created –one of Ireland’s major industries.’


Speaking about the launch, Bob Collins, Chairperson of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland said “Technology has begun to make possible ways of viewing and listening to programming not addressed in current broadcasting legislation. For this reason the BAI recognises the importance of fostering relationships and partnerships with other bodies, such as the IFI, which will further our strategic goal of empowering audiences. It is through building competence that audiences can interact with and participate in the media environment, which is why the BAI was particularly pleased to work with IFI Education and to support the ‘12-13 Project’”.

The 12-13 Project: Media Usage at An In-between Age used Media Logs to survey at the ways that 12-13 year-olds are using the media. Results showed that while the typical 12-13 year-old already has a 3G/Wi-Fi enabled phone used for texting, surfing and social networking. 12-13 year-olds are using YouTube and Facebook, even though the latter has an official age bar to under-13s. They watch an hour of television a day but this is trumped by the average 65 minutes a day spent on their games console. As this age group is at a key junction in their education – moving from primary to secondary school, media skills can facilitate this transition to new subjects, new learning styles and situations.

The five pilot projects for improving media literacy focused on working with local media content providers such as Ocean FM, RTÉ Young Peoples, Frameworks Films and web developers Gaelscéal. These innovative collaborations map out a way for educators to develop local links with content creators to help build media skills for the next generation children, not just as consumers but active young participants in media culture, seizing creative opportunities.

It’s hoped that the report will continue to impress upon the Department of Education, teacher trainers, educators and parents of the need to continue building media literacy skills into the curriculum and extra-curricular educational opportunities. With such a high rate of media usage, at different skills levels, it’s important that out-of-school media skills are given an outlet in school learning.


IFI Lithuanian Film Focus


Kristina Buožyte to present Vanishing Waves, winner of Best Film at JDIFF 2013, as part of IFI Lithuanian Film Focus

The surprise winner of Best Film at the Dublin Film Critic’s Circle awards at JDIFF 2013, Vanishing Waves returns to Dublin this December as part of the short IFI Lithuanian Film Focus running from 6th-8th December. Timed to coincide with Lithuania’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union this year, the programme reflects the diversity and strength, both in terms of style and content of the country’s film industry.

Vanishing Waves (6th Dec 6.15pm), which kicks off the weekend, is a sci-fi romance which draws on ideas and images reminiscent of Tarkovsky, Almodóvar and Michel Gondry. It’s an intense, erotically charged twist on the star-crossed lovers fable. Medical researcher Lukas, volunteers to take part in an experiment which aims to communicate with a young woman in a coma. The story convincingly generates a parallel reality which quickly begins to supersede Lukas’ own life. Director Kristina Buožyte will take part in a post screening Q+A.

Accomplished director Gytis Luksas’ most recent film Vortex (7th Dec, 1pm) is a convincing chronicle of the protracted and traumatic Soviet period of Lithuanian history. The story follows Juzik whose blissful early life in the countryside is ravaged by two tragic incidents. This powerful, elemental film unravels the cruel manner by which a corrupt system can impact the lives of its subjects.

Eastern Drift (8th Dec, 4pm) from masterly filmmaker Šarunas Bartas, is more structured than some of his award-winning previous work, with Bartas taking the lead role as a drug-runner struggling to ditch his life of crime and settle down with his French girlfriend. Full of great performances, the film retains the director’s talent for capturing a European underworld populated by those forever ignored by the mainstream.

Three different films of the past five years from directors of three different generations – It’s going to be an exciting weekend of Lithuanian cinema!

Tickets are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or www.ifi.ie



Irish Experimental Film works at IFI


The IFI and EFC present the launch of Absences and (Im)Possibilities, a programme of Irish Experimental Film works commissioned by IFI International, and curated by Esperanza Collado, Aoife Desmond, Donal Foreman and Alan Lambert.

The launch takes place tomorrow Tuesday, November 12th at 6.30pm at the IFI.

The programme features a selection of films from 1897 to 2013, chosen for their relation to the possibility of an Irish experimental cinema. Filmmakers include the Lumière brothers, Samuel Beckett, Vivienne Dick, Clare Langan, Maximillian Le Cain and Dónal Ó Céilleachair.

Full programme:

Sackville Street (Lumière Brothers, 1897, 00:50)
Youghal Clock Tower (James Horgan, 1910, 00:30)
Film (Samuel Beckett, 1964, 21:00)
Guerrillere Talks (Vivienne Dick, 1978 ,24:00)
Glass Hour (Clare Langan, 2002, 08:00)
St. Francis Didn’t Run Numbers (Chris O’Neill, 2009, 02:00)
Late Arrival (Barry Ronan, 2006, 03:00)
Mongolian Barbeque (Maximilian Le Cain, 2009, 11:00)
With Wind & White Cloud (Dónal Ó Céilleachair, 2005, 05:00)
Homo Sapiens Project (93) (Rouzbeh Rashidi, 2013, 12:47)

Tickets for Absences and (Im)Possibilities are available now from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or online at www.ifi.ie


Competition: Win tickets to ‘In the Name’ at Kinopolis



Thanks to the good people at Kinopolis we have a pair of tickets to give away for In the Name on Friday, 8th November at 18.30, which is screening as part of IFI & Kinopolis: 8th Polish Film Festival (5 – 9 November)

Małgorzata Szumowska’s In the Name tells of Father Adam (Andrzej Chyra), a priest in a rural community. Working in a centre for young men and teenage boys with reform school backgrounds introduces him to Lukasz (Mateusz Kosciukiewicz). Troubled by and struggling with his attraction to the youth, Adam seeks comfort in alcohol. When a new arrival spreads rumours about Adam’s sexuality, disaster seems inevitable; however, rather than focusing on sexuality or paedophile priests, the film is instead a sensitive meditation on the universal need for love.

To win yourself a pair of tickets, simply answer the following question:

Which 2011 film did Małgorzata Szumowska direct starring Juliette Binoche?

Email your answer to filmireland@gmail.com before 12 noon on Thursday, 7th November. The winner will be notified Thursday afternoon by email.

Showing as part of IFI & Kinopolis: 8th Polish Film Festival (November 5th – 9th).

For full programme details, please see the Festival’s website (www.kinopolis.com.pl).

Tickets are available from Friday, 26th October online at www.ifi.ie, in person at the IFI Box Office or on 01 679 3477.


50 Years of Dr. Who celebrated at the IF

Dr Who and the Daleks (13)

On the occasion of the Timelord’s 50th anniversary, the IFI presents the Doctor’s only two outings on the big screen to date on 10th November, Dr. Who and the Daleks at 4.30pm and Dalek’s Invasion of Earth 2050 A.D at 6.15pm.

The introduction of the Daleks, the Doctor’s greatest and most enduring enemy, during William Hartnell’s incarnation of the First Doctor was such a success that these films, non-canon retellings of The Daleks andThe Dalek Invasion of Earth television serials respectively, were rushed into production. To make them more palatable to an international audience, established star Peter Cushing (whose centenary is also celebrated this year) was cast as a more kindly, avuncular Doctor than Hartnell’s crotchety character.

In the first film of the double bill, Dr. Who and the Daleks, the Doctor, granddaughters Susan and Barbara, and Barbara’s boyfriend Ian arrive on Skaro, a planet desolated by an ancient nuclear war between the Daleks and the Thals. Mutated by the fallout, the Daleks seek a drug from the Thals which will protect them and enable them to exterminate their old foe.

As an additional treat for Irish Whovians, writer and filmmaker Derek O’Connor will be giving a free IFI Afternoon Talk on the Dr. Who phenomenon: Bigger on the Inside – Doctor Who at 50 will take place on 29th November at 4.30pm. An idiosyncratic and personal take on the show’s turbulent history, from its ‘60s heyday to ‘80s nadir and triumphant 21st century rebirth.


Doctor Who at 50 @ the IFI – Times and Dates

Double Bill:

Dr. Who and the Daleks 10thNovember 4.30pm

Dalek’s Invasion of Earth 2050 A.D 10thNovember 6.15pm

IFI Afternoon Talk:

Bigger on the Inside – Doctor Who at 50 19thNovember at 4.30pm


Polish film takes over the Irish Film Institute at KINOPOLIS 2013


KINOPOLIS Polish Film Festival, the longest-running and largest Polish film festival in Ireland, returns for its 8th edition to the Irish Film Institute with some of the best Polish productions. The festival takes place from 5 – 9 November and will be showing 12 contemporary titles, cult animations, a mini-poster gallery in Filmbase and Q&As with world- renowned animator Piotr Dumała and award-winning film director Andrzej Jakimowski.

KINOPOLIS 2013 showcases productions which tackle every-day struggles of contemporary Poles such as self-defining personal identity and sex orientation or fighting with and winning over physical impairements. Poland is undergoing much sociocultural changes at present, and budding filmmakers have utilised this shift to analyse and redefine the make-up of modern Poles in their work, along with adopting the themes of Western liberalism, traditions of religious obedience and unspoken taboos.

This year’s festival opens with Imagine by Andrzej Jakimowski, starring Edward Hogg (White Lightnin’ (2209), Bunny and the Bull (2009)) and Alexandra Maria Lara (‘The Reader’ (2008), Rush’ (2013)) an inspirational love story set in Portugal. Jakimowski beautifully captures the sensual chemistry of two people with visual impairment, in a search of happiness. The film has received Best Director and Audience Award at the Warsaw Film Festival (2012). After the screening the audience will have a chance to see behind the camera, in the company of the director himself during a Q&A session.

Venue: The Irish Film Institute (IFI), Screen 2,
6 Eustace St, Temple Bar, Dublin

Dates: 5-9 November 2013

Tickets: from €5.90 – €10

Bookings: www.ifi.ie/kinopolis

For more details, please visit www.kinopolis.com.pl and follow KINOPOLIS Polish Film Festival Dublin on Facebook and Twitter (@KINOPOLIS_PFF).
The full programme can be found below:

5th November, 8.45pm – ‘Imagine’ by  Andrzej Jakimowski, w/ director Andrzej Jakimowski in attendance

6th November, 6.20pm  – ‘Traffic Department’ by Wojciech Smarzowski

7th November, 6.30pm – ‘Women’s Day’ by  Marysia Sadowska

7th November, 8.30pm – ‘Love’ by Filip Dzierżawski

8th November, 6.30pm – ‘In The Name Of’ by Małgorzata Szumowska

9th November, 12pm – Dreams and Nightmares / Animations by Piotr Dumała, Q & A with Piotr Dumała after ‘Komeda, Komeda’

‘Little Black Riding Hood’

‘The Gentle One’

‘Freedom of the Leg’

‘Franz Kafka’

9th November, 12pm – ‘Komeda, Komeda’ by Natasza Ziółkowska – Kurczuk

9th November, 2.45pm – ‘Olena’ by Elżbieta Benkowska

9th November, 2.45pm – ‘A Diary Of A Journey’ by Piotr Stasik

The 8th edition is being co-financed by the Pomeranian Film Foundation, the Polish Embassy in Dublin and the Polish Film Institute, with support of Lycamobile and CRH. The festival is being supported by the IFI, Pegbar, ISA (BFCE), Dublin Community TV, Nasz Glos Polish Weekly Newspaper and Dublin City Council.


IFI Ireland on Sunday Interview: Paula Kehoe, director/producer of ‘An Dubh ina Gheal’ (‘Assimilation’)

PaulaKehoe Director
Paula Kehoe: Director/Producer


An Dubh ina Gheal (Assimilation) is a revealing exploration of the relationship between Aboriginal Australians and the Irish in Australia. Steven Galvin caught up with Paula Kehoe, the film’s director/producer, to find out more about her fascinating documentary.

An Dubh ina Gheal (Assimilation) screens at 13.00 at the IFI on Sunday, 15th September 2013.

An Dubh ina Gheal (Assimilation) is a documentary that explores the relationship between Aboriginal Australians and the Irish in Australia. Produced and directed by Paula Kehoe, the film is structured around Irish poet Louis de Paor’s journey back to his once-adopted homeland to explore a hidden story of the Irish in Australia. A story that takes in the existence of a new colonial identity in Australia – that of the ‘Aboriginal Irish’, proud to be Aboriginal and proud to be Irish – while at the same time exploring how the Irish, as white Australians, were also complicit in the dispossession of Aboriginal people.

Since the British first established a colony in Australia in 1788, Aboriginal Australians have had their land stolen from them or destroyed, become victims of new diseases brought in by sailors and convicts, and became targets of genocide. By the late 1800s, the indigenous population had been reduced from up to an estimated one million to only 60,000. During much of the 20th century, the government adopted a policy of assimilation by removing mixed race children – many of Irish heritage – from their parents and adopting them out to white families or placing them in mission schools in an effort to eradicate traces of Aboriginal culture and language. An Dubh in Gheal explores the story of this “stolen generation”, and also that of an Aboriginal resistance lead by ‘Shamrock Aborigines’, who saw theirs as a shared struggle against a common oppressor.

Paula explains how she had “brewed over the film for quite a long time. I actually started thinking about the subject area before I ever started making films. Since then it had always been at the back of my mind as a story that should be told. I wouldn’t have felt comfortable trying to tackle it in Australia as an Irish-Australian filmmaker for a lot of complex reasons. It was only really when I was in Ireland and with Louis on board that I felt comfortable with the fact that this was also an Irish story that could be told from an Irish perspective.”

Louis de Paor

Louis de Paor: Presenter/Co-Writer

Paula, who moved to Ireland in 1994, tells me how it took the years she had spent immersed in indigenous culture and language in Ireland “to raise my consciousness and deepen my understanding of the society in which I was raised. As a result my growing awareness of and engagement with Aboriginal life, culture and politics in Australia became entangled with a very Irish perspective. When I looked deeper into the recent past in Australia, the Irish dimension of the Aboriginal story was starkly apparent. It is remarkable how many Aboriginal people have Irish heritage, political activists, politicians and members of the Stolen Generations among them, and they are very proud to claim it. Yet conversely the Irish were embedded, and themselves assimilated into ‘white Australia’ and all that it entailed.”

Having first heard Louis de Paor reading the two poems that feature in the documentary in 1997 in Club Áras in Galway, Paula recalls how “they suddenly reappeared in my consciousness in 2010 while I was researching this subject.” Louis had lived in Australia and had responded to the plight of the Aboriginal people through his poems, ‘An dubh ina gheal’ and ‘Didjeridu’, which inspire the film’s narrative.

“These poems have powerful things to say about Indigenous Australians”, whom Louis feels a natural affinity with as an indigenous Irishman according to Paula. “Yet, as ‘Didjeridu’ acknowledges, the Gael, as a founding people in the story of white Australia, were also complicit in the dispossession of Aboriginal people.The fact that the poems were written in Irish is crucial. When I explained to contributors that the documentary would be bi-lingual, half in ‘Gaelic’, they were much more open to it. English is the language of the coloniser for both the Irish and Aboriginal people, and certainly the Aboriginal people I spoke to have a very keen awareness of those paralells.”

Paula first approached TG4, who liked the proposal, then wrote it up for the BAI, and it got commissioned. “Then Louis and I started working on it together and shaped it beyond my initial proposal to embrace the personal stories and the contributors who came and went and also to incorporate what Louis brought to it. So it’s evolved in various different stages. I couldn’t have done it then without Louis. He was the key to making it work. He gave it a moral centre from an Irish immigrant’s point of view. It was a fabulous experience and such a privilege working with Louis on this project.”

An Dubh ina Gheal explores the story of the ‘Stolen Generations’, but also how, despite the circumstances, out of these multi-racial unions new identities have been formed. Paula points out that “there is now a whole generation of indigenous Australians of Irish descent. During the ’60s and ’70s political activists of Irish descent were called ‘Shamrock Aborigines’, “who saw theirs as a shared struggle against a common oppressor. They recognised that the Irish have also suffered under British rule. So there are strong associations there.”

Bill Brock-Byrne & LdeP

Louis de Paor & Bill Brock-Byrne

Bill Brock-Byrne, a member of the Stolen Generations, features in the documentary and explains how he thought the missions were there to protect them from the government, and yet part of that was protecting them from their own culture and from their own beliefs.

Previously there had been little to no research done on the offspring of Irish and Aboriginal parents so Paula couldn’t rely on archival sources and “that’s why finding someone like Bill Brock-Byrne was crucial because his family history tells us so much.”

Paula admits that the documentary was the most challenging project she has ever undertaken. “It’s a sensitive area so it was important to be respectful and aware on every level. The archive film and photographs proved a tremendous challenge as there is so much kept by so many different institutions and there’s so much protocol involved in using any archive material that has indigenous content. While it wasn’t an easy journey, it has been without any doubt one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I hope that it does justice to all of those involved.”

The result is a fascinating document that achieves a balance between the historical, the personal and the poetic, crystallising the intimate and complex ties that bind the Irish and Aboriginal Australians and how that relationship is envisaged and in doing so reveals a hidden history of the Irish in Australia.


An Dubh ina Gheal (Assimilation) screens on Sunday, 15th September at 13.00 as part of the IFI’s Ireland on Sunday monthly showcase for new Irish film.

The Australian Ambassador Dr Ruth Adler will attend and there will be a post-screening Q&A with filmmaker Paula Kehoe.

Tickets for An Dubh ina Gheal (Assimilation) are available now from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or online at www.ifi.ie


Classic Films at IFI in August


Classic films back on the big screen in August: All exclusively screening at the IFI

When the IFI surveyed cinema-goers this year, it was clear that IFI Classics is one of the things Dubliners value most about the IFI and there’s an appetite for even more. Well, there’s no shortage this August, as IFI Classics exclusively present four full rereleases of classic films and two special sure-to-sell-out screenings of one of the all-time film classics, Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey on 70mm (17th & 20th August).

William Wyler’s Roman Holiday (2nd-8th August) is an ideal summer film delight featuring the striking landmarks and sleek style of the Eternal City. Audrey Hepburn in her first major role sparkles against Gregory Peck, it was a calling card that won her an Oscar and set her on course for an iconic career.

Werner Herzog’s The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser (9th-15th August) is one of Herzog’s most heartfelt works and the most intriguing of the retellings of the Kaspar Hauser legend. In Nuremberg 1928, a young man appeared, barely able to walk clutching a note declaring that his name was Kaspar and that he had grown up entirely in isolation. Herzog’s take on Hauser is less curious about where he has come from, than what happened when he comes into contact with an unshakably rational society – one that’s convinced it knows what’s best for him.

Indian cinema celebrates 100 years in 2013 and, to celebrate, the IFI is showing Satyajit Ray’s The Big City (16th-22nd August). Made in 1953, exactly halfway through the story of Indian cinema, Ray’s portrait of mid-50s Calcutta remains deeply resonant, skilfully balancing the epic and the intimate, juxtaposing life in the big city with the believably human concerns of its characters. Madhabi Mukherjee’s portrayal of the transformation from an obedient wife to hardworking career woman stands out at the heart of the film.

Patricia Highsmith’s monstrous literary creation Tom Ripley got his first cinematic outing in the form of an excellent Alain Delon in 1960’s Plein Soleil (from August 30th) by René Clemént. Delon’s nuanced performance moves easily between suave and sinister, often with just a minor change in expression, provides the perfect front for an utterly amoral killer.


Tickets for all August’s IFI Classics are available from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or online at www.ifi.ie.


IFI presents: Wanna Fight? Season


The IFI presents the Wanna Fight? Season from 331stAugust , a specially curated series of films to accompany the August 2nd release of the controversial and brutal new film by Nicolas Winding Refn Only God Forgives.

‘I’m a pornographer’declared Nicolas Winding Refn in a recent interview ‘I make films about what arouses me. What I want to see. Very rarely to understand why I want to see it and I’ve learned not to become obsessed with that part of it’. Though the director of Pusher and Drive has always been an arch provocateur, his new film, the elegant and brutal Only God Forgives starring Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Scott Thomas, has brought new levels of controversy with the film’s stylised violence becoming one of the major talking points of this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

Yet Winding Refn’s films are never entirely cold or alienating and the heart of a true cineaste beats through his work. The IFI’s Wanna Fight? season is a selection of Winding Refn’s key influences and references, some directly acknowledged and some suggested. In particular the season contextualises Only God Forgives which audiences are invited to make their own minds up about when it is released at the IFI on August 2nd.

Winding Refn has been keen to invoke the names of other filmmakers in his work. Alejandro Jodorowsky’s name appears on the credits to both Drive and Only God Forgives, the genius filmmaker is represented here by the bizarre, beautiful and brilliant Santa Sangre. Also explicitly referenced by Winding Refn in relation to Only God Forgives is Gaspar Noé, a fellow provocateur, whose Enter the Void proved one of the most divisive of films released at the IFI in 2009. Winding Refn has namechecked Richard Kern, a key member of the 1980s NYC Cinema of Transgression Movement, and a selection of his short works characterised by extreme eroticism and disturbing violence are included in the season.

Other elements in the Wanna Fight? season are more thematic. Kirsten Scott Thomas’s evil matriarch who encourages her son to do despicable things in Only God Forgives has a strong resonance with Angela Lansbury in The Manchurian Candidate. With Wong Kar Wai it’s more the richly coloured and textured look of his films such as Ashes of Time Redux that form the link to Winding Refn, while with the Pang Brothers Bangkok Dangerous it’s the terrific low-budget gun-play that warrants its inclusion.

Other highlights of the season include Seijun Suzuki’s Tokyo Drifter and David Lynch’s Wild at Heart. Oh, and if you’re only catching up with the violent swathe Winding Refn has cut through the world of film, there’s another chance to see 2011’s cool and casually gory Drive back on the big screen! Full details of all the films in the season are available at www.ifi.ie

Wanna Fight? Season – Times and Dates in August

The Manchurian Candidate – John Frankenheimer  – Aug 3rd16.05 & Aug 5th 18.20

Santa Sangre – Alejandro Jodorowsky – Aug 7th 20.30 & Aug 10th 13.30

Ashes of Time Redux – Wong Kar Wai – August 13th20.50

Drive – Nicolas Winding Refn – Aug 14th 18.30

Bangkok Dangerous – The Pang Brothers –  Aug 21st20.45

Wild at Heart – David Lynch – Aug 25th15.30 & Aug 26th 18.15

Enter the Void –  Gaspar Noé – Aug 28th20.15 & Aug 31st 15.15

Tokyo Drifter – Seijun Suzuki – Aug 29th18.30 & Aug 31st 18.30

Richard Kern Programme – Richard Kern – Aug 29th20.30 & Aug 31st 13.15

Tickets go on sale from the IFI Box Office in person, on 01 679 5744 or online at www.ifi.ie from the 25th July 2013