Thursday, July 28, 2011

IFI Family Festival: Beast Hunt Results announced

Thank you to everyone who took part in our IFI Family Film Festival Beast Hunt. Congratulations to Frances, Ryan and Charlie and everyone else who completed the hunt.

Chata © Chris Judge

IFI Family Festival Beast Hunt Results:

1st – Frances   12.20
2nd – Ryan       12.22
3rd – Charlie    12.23

Other participants: 
Tayler & Lara - 12.30
Elena & Jack - 12.32
Cian - 12.34
Jeff & Julia & Samuel - 12.35
James - 12.36
Keela - 12.38
Layla - 12.38
Mia - 12.40
Maya & Catalina - 12.40
Julia & James - 12.45
Maria & Liam - 12.54
Hugh & Rory - 12.56
Sarah - 12.58
Ashling - 12.58
Holly - 12.59

We would like to thank the amazing illustrator and painter Chris Judge for facilitating the workshop A Beasty Creation, and for his involvement in the Beast Hunt. As part of the IFI Family Festival, we screened his short film The Lonely Beast and Chris' illustrated book is now available at the IFI Film Shop. 

We hope you had fun. See you next year!

IFI Family Festival Team 

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

August at the IFI

Welcome to our programme for August which includes a focus on films representing the Traveller community, a season of Westerns and the first part of a retrospective on legendary French filmmaker Alain Resnais.

Pedro Almodóvar's The Skin I Live In 

The steady stream of strong Irish documentaries continues at the IFI this August with Ian Palmer’s Knuckle, a decadein-the-making exploration of the violent elements of Irish Traveller culture. Accompanying the release is a season of  Traveller films that gives a wider view of the way that the community has been represented, from Joe Comerford’s debut feature Traveller to Perry Ogden’s fine examination of Traveller life during the Celtic Tiger years in Pavee Lackeen. There will be a chance to debate and discuss the cinematic representation of Travellers during a panel discussion with filmmakers alongside community artists and representatives.

Travellers On Film: Southpaw

The IFI Western Season demonstrates what a particularly highly contested genre the Western has become. Alongside popular political films such as High Noon and Rio Bravo, the season also includes a rare screening of an example of the once-popular Eastern Bloc Westerns (or Osterns). Lemonade Joe gives a fascinating insight into how the iconography of the American West was successfully adapted and reimagined to suit Communist regimes.

High Noon

Heritage Week (August 20th – 28th) is traditionally a busy time for IFI National and 2011 is no exception. The Kingdom and I: Kerry on Film is a programme of rarely-seen silent and sound films from the IFI Irish Film Archive which will screen at St. John’s Theatre, Listowel on August 25th. Elsewhere, Willy Reilly and His Colleen Bawn (1920) will screen on August 25th at the Pearse Museum, Rathfarnham, where the film was shot in 1920, and Dublin in the Rare Oul’ Times will return to the Dublin City Public Libraries network.

August has a packed schedule of new releases that include Project Nim, James Marsh’s hotly-anticipated follow-up to Man on Wire; In a Better World, this year’s Best Foreign Language Film Oscar winner; and another journey into Pedro Almodóvar’s unique imagination with The Skin I Live In.

Audrey Tautou in Beautiful Lies

There’s also an exciting trio of new French films that include Kristin Scott Thomas in Sarah’s Key; Audrey Tautou in Beautiful Lies; and this month’s French Film Club selection, Eric Lartigau’s The Big Picture. We also honour one of France’s master filmmakers, Alain Resnais, to complement the re-release of Last Year in Marienbad. The season includes early masterpieces such as Muriel and Hiroshima mon amour as well as later films that consolidated his position as one of cinema’s most mesmerising and innovative storytellers.

Sarah Glennie

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Cars, rats and cupcakes... IFI Family Festival 2011

Sunday afternoon at IFI, Dee Quinlan is reading subtitles of  Short Tales, our Family Festival short film programme, to an eager and appreciative audience aged between 4 and 8 in the cinema. Outside on Meeting House Square, 20 young artists are waiting for the grand ‘opening’ of their mural,  created under the guidance of expert visual artists Re-Ink-Our-Nation and inspired by Herzog’s Cave of Forgotten Dreams. As Diana Bunici, tRTE presenter and our hugely energetic and willing festival patron steps up to cut the imaginary ribbon, cameras click and admiring parents clap at the work their youngsters have put in to transform the construction hoarding. And what a transformation – a quick walk around the hoarding reveals their ideas on viking lives, future lives and what is important to them today. Realised as part of Temple Bar Cultural Trust’s Made in Temple Bar Festival, it’s been a great collaboration.

Young street artists and visual duo from Re-Ink-Our-Nation
Back inside, we’re just about recovering from having let a few beasts loose around Temple Bar, looking for The Lonely Beast, the character of Chris Judge’s children’s story and animation. Face-painting rules, with river rat whiskers sprouting on three-year-old faces. Said rats had made their first appearance on the banks of the Liffey with Diana, tRTE’s Stephen Byrne, and a handful of young film fans, posing and smiling behind beautiful painted boards featuring the Light of the River characters. The boards, painted by artist Li Aiken were a huge hit – with parents, kids and all posing behind them for photos over the weekend. Li turned her talents to the foyer too and, with volunteer Deirbhle, decorated the place with road markings, bollards and stop signs in preparation for Saturday’s Cars 2 rally - starring members of the audience in their own cut-out cars and waved off by Stephen in full rally mode. 

At the preview of Cars 2 

Volunteers truly got into the Festival spirit, and we really couldn’t have managed without the help and enthusiasm of them all –‘old’ hands Lauren, Gabrielle, Scott, Colm, Chloe were back for a 2nd year as well as newcomers: Odhran, who made the steps; Marina, Faye, Hazel, Eoghan, Kay, Michelle, Siofra, Rachel, Breffni, Veronica, Michael, Nicole, all of whom got stuck in blowing up balloons, facepainting, leafleting, minding workshops, running errands, tearing tickets and generally lending a hand - they were an amazing asset to the Festival. The street art was a huge project to manage, and this was made possible by the willingness and professionalism of our volunteer Sarah, who was invaluable throughout the whole event.

IFI Family Festival 2011 - one of the workshops

Back to the films, full houses for The Gruffalo and Cars 2, with appreciative and keen audiences for Light of the River, On the Sly and The Crocodiles Strike Back. We’d audiences from Donegal and Skibbereen, who travelled specially for the event, as well as new faces and IFI regulars, bringing young family and friends to experience some of the best family cinema from around the world. ‘Best day ever’ said Beibhin after attending Fergal’s music workshop. ‘Brillant’ and ‘Deadly’ were claymations with Estrella, ‘I’ll give it five and a half stars’ said one discerning viewer after the opening film. And for those who didn’t want a big screen, we set up a Secret Cinema too, with room for four viewers who could sit in the darkened room, with fairylight decor and cushions at their feet. As the lights go down on our closing film from France, On the Sly, stepping outside into the light and frequently bursting balloons, it’s hard not to think that alternative cinema has a great future here, if the openness and enthusiasm of this young audience is anything to go by. 

See more photos from the IFI Family Festival 2011 [here].  

Alicia McGivern
Head of Education

Thursday, July 14, 2011

IFI Family Festival 2011 is on!

Summer holidays too long? Then take your family to see some water rats, crocodiles, mice, bears and gruffalos this summer! No, not a long hot day at the zoo but a visit to IFI Family Festival where our programme of films from around the world tell stories about some wild and wonderful creatures – and humans too!

Light of the River
Starting with Light of the River, a Japanese animation in the Studio Ghibli style, with an eco-message too. It’s a funny and heart warming story about a family of river rats who are forced to swim upriver to find a new home. Many laughs in little Chi Chi’s adventures and the wise father’s endeavours to save him from sewer rat enemies...

In the Attic: Who has a Birthday Today?

From Ireland, A Shine of Rainbows stars Aidan Quinn and Connie Nielson as a couple who bring  young Tomas into their coastal home. Great performances from young John Bell as Tomas and Dubliner Jack Gleeson as one of the local boys.

When wizardly adaptations have been eagerly awaited in cinemas here, in Germany huge audiences look forward to the adaptations of a very popular book series about a gang of friends who call themselves the Crocodiles. In this latest film, The Crocodiles Strike Back, the friends look like going their separate ways owing to job losses for some of the parents. So they set out to do all they can to stick together, even if that means breaking into the local factory to find out what exactly is going on. ..

RTE presenters Diana Bunici & Stephen Byrne
with young film fans at the launch of the Festival

Oh yes, several of the films are subtitled. But that’s not a problem as we have experienced readers who will read to the audience. And you’ll be surprised when you see how effective this is. Some people describe it as having a story read aloud. Kids love it. Speaking of stories, one of our guests - author and illustrator, Chris Judge - will present his own story, The Lonely Beast, on Sunday morning – before that very popular beast, The Gruffalo, hits the screen. And if that’s not enough beastly business, we’ll be letting a crowd of beast hunters loose in Temple Bar just after the film, led by our Festival Patron, tRTE’s Diana Bunici. Diana will be popping in and out of several Festival sceenings, workshops and events, introducing her favourite film and talking to audiences.

Young films fans at the launch of the Festival

What makes a film festival for young people really different is that it offers a glimpse into lifestyles and cultures from all over the world. None more so than in this year’s very special screening of Wind and Fog by Iranian filmmaker, Mohammed Ali-Talebi, in which ten-year-old Sahand is growing up in wartime. A wonderful film, beautiful in places and truly insightful into a very different life experience. From the other side of the world, Minnie and Junior features in one of our shorts programme, about two Aboriginal children. Minnie just can’t understand why Junior is more interested in fishing than her!

On the Sly / A Pas de Loup 
Our Festival starts with the natural world and finishes there too: On the Sly (A Pas de Loup), showing on Sunday, brings viewers right into a French forest where six-year-old Cathy goes to hide from her parents and finds that living on berries, avoiding wolves and sleeping under the stars is quite an adventure! Fabulous performance from the young actor; a story about being brave, and knowing when it’s ok not to be.

We’d love to see you and your young film fans at the IFI Family Festival.

See some photos from the Opening Night on our Facebook Page.

Alicia McGivern
Head of Education

Thursday, July 7, 2011

July at IFI

July looks set to be an extraordinary month of three special directors’ seasons and our annual IFI Family Festival. It’s going to be busy!

Apichatpong Weerasethakul is one of the world’s most exciting and unique filmmakers working today, and during July and August audiences in Dublin will have the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in a major retrospective of his cinematic works at the IFI (from July 16th) and a multimedia exhibition at IMMA (For Tomorrow For Tonight, opening July 27th). Apichatpong came to the IFI in November for a special preview of his 2010 Palme d’Or winner Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, and captivated the audience that night with an eloquent and thought-provoking discussion of his work. We are delighted then to be welcoming him back to the IFI on July 23rd for an in-depth interview about his career with Dr. Maeve Connolly. This is a free event presented in collaboration with IMMA and one not-to-be-missed.

The Tree of Life

There are some great films out this month and prize winners abound. The much-anticipated 2011 winner of the Palme d’Or at Cannes, The Tree of Life, hits our screens and, to mark the momentous event that a new Terrence Malick film represents, we are showing three Malick classics: Badlands, The Thin Red Line and The New World.

A Separation astounded audiences at this year’s Berlin Film Festival (picking up the Golden Bear) and confirms an increasingly strong position for Iranian cinema on the world stage. Poetry was one of the most memorable films from Cannes last year, and is a powerful and masterful portrayal of an older woman’s struggle to find her place in Korean society; and the master of modern cinema Jean-Luc Godard brings us what he claims to be his last ever film: Film Socialisme.

Light of the River at the IFI Family Festival

The IFI Family Festival opens on July 14th, bringing our young film fans a packed four days of the best films from around the world, as well as workshops and free festival activities in the foyer. Art, music and technology group Synth Eastwood join us again for the opening night with a free spectacular interactive family event followed by the delightful, award-winning Japanese animation Light of the River. Other festival highlights include: A Shine of Rainbows, a family drama set on the west coast of Ireland; In the Attic, a beautifully crafted stop-motion animation from Czech animator Jirí Barta;  Wind and Fog, a heart-rending film about a 10-year-old boy from Iran; and our closing French film, On the Sly, about a young girl’s adventures in a forest. Don’t just come for the films – join us for plenty of fun and exciting workshops, ranging from stop-motion animation, claymation and illustration to a large scale public graffiti art project and an interactive beast hunt around Temple Bar. Each day will be packed with choices for children of all ages. Check online for details of the full programme or pick up one of the festival programmes in the IFI.

And, finally, we are delighted to welcome back GAZE International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival with a special Fassbinder season presented in collaboration with the IFI.

Weerasethakul, Fassbinder and Malick all in one month – only at the IFI!

Sarah Glennie