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movies

AFTER THE STORM [JAPAN], THU 9 NOVEMBER, 8PM

By archive, Season 17 films

A hard-boiled family drama with a soft heart.

Dwelling on his past glory as a prize-winning author, Ryota wastes the money he makes as a private detective on gambling and can barely pay child support. After the death of his father, his aging mother and beautiful ex-wife seem to be moving on with their lives. Renewing contact with his initially distrusting family, Ryota struggles to take back control of his existence and to find a lasting place in the life of his young son – until a stormy summer night offers them a chance to truly bond again.

Dr. Till Weingärtner, Lecturer in Contemporary East Asian Studies (Japan) at University College Cork, will introduce the film.

There is such intelligence and delicacy in Koreeda’s film-making, such wit and understated humanity. – ★★★★ The Guardian

One of our best filmmaker’s best films. –  ★★★★ Roger Ebert.com

An achingly beautiful ode to the quiet complexities of family life. – ★★★★ The Telegraph

Slow-paced, sad, rueful and sometimes warmly funny, After the Storm is one of the director Hirokazu Koreeda’s sturdiest, and most sensitive, constructions. – New York Times Critic’s Pick

96% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

UMI YORI MO MADA FUKAKU |Japan, 2017 | Language: Japanese | 117 minutes | Cert: Club

Director: Hirokazu Koreeda

Cast: Abe Hiroshi, Maki Yoko, Yoshizawa Taiyo, Kiki Kilin, Lily Franky, Hashizume Isao

 

CLASH [EGYPT], THU 16 NOVEMBER, 8PM

By archive, Season 17 films

Mohamed Diab brings claustrophobic intimacy to a historic moment in this stunning thriller, set inside a police vehicle during Egypt’s 2013 street protests.

“The Egyptian revolution that dislodged Hosni Mubarak in 2011 and its chaotic aftermath continues to give us some fascinating films. Here is the latest, a rather amazing New Wave-style drama that combines claustrophobic intimacy with some logistically epic scene-setting.

The year is 2013, the army has just unseated Mohamed Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood, and pro-army and pro-MB factions clash on the streets. A reporter and photographer are arrested and thrown into the back of a police van, which is the sole camera setting; soon, other demonstrators from both sides are chucked in – along with, in one particularly chaotic scene, a lenient cop. They are crowded in there for hours in the boiling heat with no water and a plastic bottle to pee in. Through the grille-meshed window they get glimpses of the turmoil on the city streets.

At first, it looks like a no-budget movie with about a dozen people shot in a single location, but the director, Mohamed Diab, stages some spectacular riot scenes outside, which are all the more staggering for intruding on this enclosed space so unexpectedly.

The movie stunningly replicates that sense of inside and outside that must be felt by witnesses to any historic moment: the private debate, the enclosed conflict, and the theatre of confrontation unfolding beyond. What a dynamic piece of cinema.” – Peter Bradshaw The Guardian

‘Bravura film-making with a kick-in-the-gut message about chaos and cruelty.’Variety

‘Director Mohamed Diab won’t let us pick sides in this prize-winning drama which is thick with tension.’ – ★★★★ The Evening Standard

Click here to read an interview with the director.

ESHTEBAK | Egypt, 2017 | Language: Arabic | 97 minutes | Cert: CLUB

Director:   Mohamed Diab

Cast: Nelly Karim, Hani Adel, El Sebaii Mohamed

Director Gavin FitzGerald will attend on the night, and introduce his short Irish documentary, The Truth About Irish Hip Hop, about the rise of hip hop in Ireland and the changing attitudes towards the once foreign art form.  His 19 minute short film will be shown before the feature.

THE OTHER SIDE OF HOPE [FINLAND], THU 23 NOVEMBER, 8PM

By archive, Season 17 films

Combines poignancy with torrents of laughter. ★★★★★  The Telegraph

Finland’s master of deadpan comedy, Aki Kaurismäki (Lights in the Dusk, Le Havre), returns with the story of an unlikely friendship between a Syrian asylum seeker and an elderly Finnish restaurant owner.  Winner of the Berlin Silver Bear for Best Director, it’s a beautiful, timely film from one of the world’s leading auteurs.

Khaled (Sherwan Haji) arrives at the port of Helsinki concealed in a coal container, fleeing war-torn Syria to seek asylum in Finland. Dazed and frustrated by the monolithic administration he encounters at the detention centre, he makes a break for it and heads out onto the streets.

There he meets Wikström (Sakari Kuosmanen), a former shirt salesman who has recently left his alcoholic wife for a new life as a bachelor restaurateur. Together, they help each other to navigate the adversities they face in these unfamiliar and often baffling new worlds.

With hilarious sight gags, poker-faced one liners and a toe-tapping rockabilly soundtrack, Kaurismäki’s latest balances his unparalleled wit with a pressing critique of the unforgiving bureaucracy that greets vulnerable asylum seekers in modern-day Europe.

Humane and sincere, it’s proof of cinema’s power to tell stories that matter, with beauty and heart.

‘Finnish auteur Aki Kaurismäki’s film is filled with curious oddballs, but there are also many ethical connundrums to contend with.’ – ★★★★  The Irish Times

‘Finds the artist at the height of his powers… winsome, sweet, and often very funny.’Indiewire

Click  here for website.

TOIVON TUOLLA PUOLEN |Finland, 2017 | Language: Finnish | 98 minutes | Cert: 12

Director:    Aki Kaurismaki

Cast:  Ville Virtanen, Kati Outinen, Tommi Korpela, Sakari Kuosmanen

Director Sinéad O’Loughlin will attend and introduce her short Irish film, Homecoming, about a young man’s struggles to find his place in life after returning to Ireland. A familiar face makes him wonder if things are about to change.  Her 12-minute film will be shown before the feature.

20TH CENTURY WOMEN [USA], THU 30 NOVEMBER, 8PM

By archive, Season 17 films

Annette Bening stars as a single mother who recruits two women to help raise her son in this warm drama set in Southern California in the late 1970s.

“Director Mike Mills follows Beginners, his Oscar-winning study of the relationship between a son and his gay father, with another picture that takes as its jumping-off point the bond between parent and child. In the case of this late 70s-set cultural odyssey, the parent is gregarious, open-minded single mother Dorothea (the superb Annette Bening) and the child is Jamie (Lucas Jade Zumann), the teenage son she isn’t quite sure she can guide on his path to becoming a man.

To this end, she recruits the help of two other women to help raise him. Her lodger, Abbie (Greta Gerwig), is a photographer crowd surfing on the anger and energy of the new wave scene. And Julie (Elle Fanning) is Jamie’s best friend, a sullen beauty who is casually oblivious to the fact that he is in love with her.

But the 20th century is almost as important a character as the women. Mills weaves together a tapestry of social, cultural and political strands. In part of the extensive voiceover, delivered predominantly by Dorothea and Jamie, the boy talks of his last memory of his absent father – a birthday in 1974 – which deftly links mid-70s fashion trends (mirrored sunglasses) with news events (President Gerald Ford’s historic tumble down the steps of Air Force One) and with vomit on a carpet.

Mills makes reference to the experimental documentary Koyaanisqatsi with accelerated clips of teeming southern California life; he even includes a clip of Koyaanisqatsi itself to emphasise the parallel. Dorothea’s 1940s jazz rubs shoulders with Talking Heads and Black Flag; still photography mood boards give way to psyched-out, colour-saturated “film burn” effects, which nod to the California hippie hotbed that spawned the film’s other key character, William (Billy Crudup). There’s a certain arch self-awareness in the screenwriting that won’t appeal to everyone, but I loved the film for its scrapbook structure, its warmth and candour.” – Wendy Ide, The Guardian

Annette Bening is the pitch-perfect centerpiece.’ –  Los Angeles Times

Click here to read feature article about the film in the Los Angeles Times.

USA, 2017 | Language: English | 118 minutes | Cert: 16

Writer/Director: Mike Mills

Cast: Annette Benning, Elle Fanning, Greta Gerwig, Lucas Jade Zumann

A MAN CALLED OVE [SWEDEN], THU 7 DECEMBER, 8PM

By archive, Season 17 films

Season 17 concludes with our ‘bonus’ 11th film, the Academy Award nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, A Man Called Ove.  It’s one of the feel-good films of 2017, and well-timed for the start of the Christmas season.

Ove (Rolf Lassgård) is a retiree struggling to come to terms with the death of his wife – a struggle that he angrily takes out on his neighbours by strictly enforcing the estate rules. Ove’s world is unexpectedly turned upside down when a young family move in next door. Despite his initial resistance, Ove slowly forms a bond with his new neighbours and discovers a whole new side of life.

Based on the best-selling novel by Fredrik Backman [translated into more than 40 languages], this Swedish hit is a bittersweet but charming tale of one man rediscovering himself after a devastating tragedy. Darkly comic but sensitively told, this is a true crowd-pleaser held together by a remarkable lead performance.

A strong contender for feel-good film of the year. – Empire Magazine

A touching comic crowd-pleaser that may call for a tissue or two by the end. – Variety

A black comedy with a big heart.The Guardian

Tom Hanks to star in and produce A Man Called OveHollywood Reporter

EN MAN SOM HETER OVE | Sweden/Norway, 2016 | Language: Swedish | 116 minutes | Cert: 15A

Director: Hannes Holm

Cast: Rolf Lassgård, Bahar Pars, Filip Berg,  Ida Engvoll

A short Irish film, Second to None [7 minutes], will be shown before the feature.