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

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