On the fringes of Dublin two children, Kylie and Dylan, live in a suburban housing estate devoid of life, colour and the prospect of escape. Kylie lives with five other siblings and her overworked mother. Next door, Dylan lives in the shadow of an alcoholic father and the memory of an elder brother who ran away from home two years earlier.
After a violent altercation with his father, Dylan runs away from home and Kylie decides to go with him. Together they make their way to the magical night time lights of inner city Dublin, to search for Dylan’s brother, and in the hope of starting a new life. Continue reading Lance Daly – Kisses (2008)
A war photographer on assignment in Kurdistan is traumatized by the death of his best friend. He is then nursed back to health by his girlfriend’s grandfather, who may or may not be a notorious war criminal from the Spanish Civil War.
When I looked up a bit of information on Triage after watching it, I was genuinely surprised to discover that it’s not a true story. I suppose it’s the touch of an actual war correspondent that gives it that real life cache, as the author of the novel it’s based upon is a veteran in that arena. While it had a degree of Hollywood polish and shine, it felt tremendously possible, which made it easy to relate to as a viewer, despite my having spent the entirety of my own life lazy and safe and nowhere near anything approximating war. Continue reading Danis Tanovic – Triage (2009)
Eilis Lacey followed her sister, Rose’s, plan to leave Ireland and find a better future and job in the US. She departs terribly, enduring seasickness and a terrible relationship with her cabin mates. A kind traveler gives her advice to live in Brooklyn, where many Irish immigrants live. Eilis settles in Brooklyn and becomes close to Father Flood, a Catholic priest. She gets a job in a department store and falls in love with an Italian boy named Tony. News from home sends Eilis back to Ireland, away from Tony. Continue reading John Crowley – Brooklyn (2015)
Based on the best selling autobiography by Irish expat Frank McCourt, Angela’s Ashes follows the experiences of young Frankie and his family as they try against all odds to escape the poverty endemic in the slums of pre-war Limerick. The film opens with the family in Brooklyn, but following the death of one of Frankie’s siblings, they return home, only to find the situation there even worse. Prejudice against Frankie’s Northern Irish father makes his search for employment in the Republic difficult despite his having fought for the IRA, and when he does find money, he spends the money on drink. Continue reading Alan Parker – Angela’s Ashes [+ Commentary] (1999)
James Joyce is widely regarded as one of the most important writers of the last century. His most famous novel, Ulysses, may be demanding of its readers, but it is also regarded as one of the most influential books ever written. In this documentary, James Joyce: A Shout in the Street, Anjelica Huston tells the story of his extraordinary life and work. Joyce’s story begins with his chaotic childhood in Dublin. What follows is a roller-coaster of ambition, rejection, fame, madness and, above all, sacrifice – both of himself and of those close to him. Continue reading Kieron J. Walsh – James Joyce: A Shout in the Street (2017)
Alone in her empty flat, from her window Anne observes the people passing by who nervously snatch up the personal belongings and pieces of furniture she has put out on the pavement. Her final gesture of taking a ring off her finger signals she is leaving her previous life in Holland behind. She goes to Ireland, where she chooses to lead a solitary, wandering existence, striding through the austere landscapes of Connemara. During her travels, she discovers a house that is home to a hermit, Martin. Continue reading Urszula Antoniak – Nothing Personal (2009)
Sophia Howard rents a house in the countryside of Wales and hires the occultist Joseph Solomon to contact her son that was kidnapped and murdered by teenagers practicing black magic. Along the days, Sophia follows the guidance of Solomon in rituals to purify her soul. However Sophia has a hidden agenda that jeopardizes their lives. Continue reading Liam Gavin – A Dark Song (2016)