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If you know where and when to look in Dublin you can find a film festival showing the finest cinema of almost any region or culture in the world. Frequently the where is the Irish Film Institute and coming soon for the when is this May, as this year the IFI will be hosting the inaugural Chinese-language Film Festival Ireland. Titled ‘Made in Taiwan‘,  the festival will be showing some a range of acclaimed Chinese-language films, including the martial arts classic A Touch of Zen and what’s more, the festival will be highlighting the work of master filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien, as well as his longtime collaborator, screenwriter Chu Tien-Wen.

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Director: James Gunn  Starring: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff, Elizabeth Debicki, and Kurt Russell  Running Time: 136 mins


Living up to the first Guardians Of The Galaxy was always going to be a daunting task. Based on a largely unknown bunch of characters from the pages of Marvel comics, the first film was an insanely successful surprise hit that caught audiences off guard in the best possible way with its unique brand of humour, adventure, sci-fi thrills, and breakout characters. Sure the trailers looked good, but nobody knew quite what to make of it until they sat down in the theatre and had their proverbial minds blown.

Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol.2, arriving on a wave of expectation and hype, has the unenviable task of trying to recapture that magic. And honestly, although it can’t quite match the surprise impact and originality of its predecessor, it still gives it one hell of a good shot. This film is absolutely tons of fun – expanding on the scale, humour, and unique quirks of the first film, while aiming to dig a bit deeper into the characters and their own separate corner of the Marvel universe.Read more…

Director: Terry George Starring: Oscar Isaac, Charlotte Le Bon, Christian Bale Running Time: 134 minutes


Between 1915 and 1923, the Ottoman government systematically murdered 1.5 million Armenians, massacring men and/or working them to death in forced labour while deporting women, children and the elderly into death marches through the desert. It was a genocide that to this day, the Turkish state has refused to acknowledge. As one of the bleakest acts in relatively recent human history, the Armenian Genocide is undoubtedly worthy of being told to a wide audience, which makes The Promise all the more frustrating. Despite having a relatively high budget, talented and well-known actors and someone with a good track record in historical drama behind the camera in Terry George (the Irish director having directed Hotel Rwanda in addition to writing films like The Boxer and In The Name of the Father), The Promise is hampered in its depiction of history because of its choice to set that history as the backdrop to a romance that is not especially interesting.

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Ireland’s newest genre film festival is coming to Dublin from the 5th-7th May.  Dublin Sci Fi Film Festival’s inaugural programme features Irish premieres of The Winter Soldier (from Blue Valentine screenwriter, Joey Curtis), The Untamed (Winner of the Venice Film Festival Silver Lion) and Creature Designers: The Frankenstein Complex; indie gems such as She’s Allergic to Cats and Embers; a range of international shorts and Sci-Fi classics such as Barbarella, The Forbidden Planet and a very special 30th anniversary screening of The Running Man.

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Special Q&A screenings of Lady Macbeth will be held in Cinema Killarney on the 22nd of April and Light House Cinema Dublin on the 28th of April to mark the film’s Irish release. The only connection to the Shakespearean figure seems to be murder.

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Director: Ben Wheatley Starring: Cillian Murphy, Sharlto Copley, Brie Larson, Jack Reynor, Michael Smiley Running Time: 90 minutes


A high stakes deal between criminals. Clashes of personality, honour among thieves. A job that goes souther than south. And lots and lots of gun fire. If Free Fire was actually made during the decade in which it’s set, the 1970s, then it’s not hard to imagine its ultra-macho story being played considerably more straightfaced. Ben Wheatley and co-writer and co-editor Amy Jump on the other hand, choose to draw out the crime drama tropes to a near-breaking point, not past the point of absurdity but stopping just shy of it, resulting in a madcap action comedy that winds up its entertainingly clashing cast and then sets them against each other in a shoot-out that lasts for over an hour.

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