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The Dublin Feminist Film Festival celebrates female filmmakers, with the aim of inspiring and empowering more female involvement in filmmaking. The films screened at the festival consider women both on screen and behind it, showcasing stories told by and about women. For four years the festival has showcased great films by women from Ireland and abroad and involved women in film in discussions about their work, and the festival returns November 16 – 18 for a weekend of films that look to the future of women in cinema.

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The cinema equivalent of a Coca Cola truck wheeling into town for Dublin film fans, the Light House Cinema’s announcement of their ‘Naughty or Nice’ season heralds the arrival of the Christmas season, just as the Halloween decorations start coming down. The month of December in the Smithfield cinema is dedicated to Christmas classics, with all your favourite Christmas movies available on the big screen. We don’t know about you, but it’s hard not to look at the amazing artwork above by Chris Judge and not feel the excitement and the nostalgia start to flow. The full season has been announced and tickets are already on sale, so the time to start writing to Santa for two tickets to Die Hard is now.

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Director: Taika Waititi Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Cate Blanchett, Tessa Thomson, Jeff Goldblum, Mark Ruffalo, Idris Elba, Anthony Hopkins, Karl Urban  Running Time: 130 minutes


Thor: Ragnarok is fine. This might seem like a needlessly dismissive hot take on a movie that has been popular with critics and a hit at the Irish box office (the film was responsible for over 46% of the Irish 3-day weekend box office), but given the considerable talent involved in the film, both on screen and in the director’s chair, is it spoiled to come out of Marvel’s latest blockbuster? Let’s not be too much of a curmudgeon about this; Ragnarok is a frequently very funny film, one that meets the expectations of its audience, set firmly from that “he’s a friend from work!” trailer, more or less exactly. It is another Marvel movie, and much like pizza, even when they’re not amazing they’re still pretty good. It is what it is. It just could have been more than that.

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Director: Tomas Alfredson Starring: Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson, Charlotte Gainsbourg, J.K. Simmons, Toby Jones, Val Kilmer Running time: 119 mins


Nordic noir is something that Hollywood has been trying to crack for many years. Although movies, novels and TV shows on this side of the pond have slashed their way to nordic noir notoriety, Hollywood’s attempts to produce this type of dark, urban-based crime fiction hasn’t produced many results.

Expectations were high, however, when news broke of The Snowman; a Jo Nesbø novel adaptation directed by Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy director Tomas Alfredson, starring Michael Fassbender and produced by none other than Martin Scorsese. On paper The Snowman should be a masterpiece. In reality, it couldn’t be further from one.

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Director: Armando Iannucci Starring: Jeffrey Tambor, Steve Buscemi, Simon Russell Beale, Jason Isaacs, Michael Palin Running Time: 107 minutes


For years with both The Thick of It and Veep, Armando Iannucci has brilliant and bitterly skewed the nature of politicians in the West, bumbling self-servingly from scandal to scandal, always better equipped at putting down each other than accomplishing anything on their own. Applying that style of satire to Soviet Russia seems like a recipe for great comedy, but the stakes are rather different in a political climate where no one is allowed to admit that scandals ever happened and putting down political rivals meant a few feet underground rather than a few creatively chosen swear words. Staging the aftermath of Josef Stalin’s death similarly to the events of an episode of one of those programmes results in a black comedy that’s frequently very funny, but the satire here has a somber note too. That the people in charge of a superpower could be as arrogant and incompetent as those shuffled off to The Thick of It‘s Department of Social Affairs and Citizenship has some fairly chilling implications. Thank Christ we don’t have to worry about anything like that these days.

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The stunningly beautiful Song of Granite which is Ireland’s submission for the Foreign Language category at next year’s Academy Awards will be released in Irish cinemas on 8th December.  Wildcard Distribution, who are distributing the film, have released the official trailer and an image from the film.  Watch the trailer here:

The biopic from acclaimed filmmaker Pat Collins (Silence) charts the rise of traditional Irish folk singer Joe Heaney, and how the songs of his west of Ireland childhood helped shape his complex character.  Co-written by Collins, Eoghan Mac Giolla Bhríde, and Sharon Whooley, the film had its world premiere at this year’s SXSW Film Festival and was awarded the Best Cinematography prize (Richard Kendrick) at the Galway Film Fleadh.

 

Enigmatic and complex, Joe Heaney was one of the greats of traditional Irish singing (sean nós). Shaped by the myths, fables, and songs of his upbringing in the west of Ireland, his emergence as a gifted artist came at a personal cost. Featuring performances from Colm Seoighe, Macdara Ó’Fátharta, Jaren Cerf, Lisa O’Neill, Damien Dempsey, and sean nós singers Micheál O’Confhaola and Pól Ó Ceannabháin, and beautiful black and white cinematography, Song of Granite is a distinctive portrait of Heaney’s life and a marvellous exploration of music and song.

 

The film was produced by Alan Maher and Jessie Fisk of Marcie Films with Martin Paul-Hus of Amerique Film and was supported by Bord Scannán na hÉireann/Irish Film Board, BAI, TG4 and with the financial participation of Société de Développement Des Entreprises Culturelles – Québec, Telefilm Canada.

 

Director: S Craig Zahler Starring: Vince Vaughn, Jennifer Carpenter, Don Johnson, Udo Kier Running time: 132 mins

Vince Vaughn: Skull Cruncher. Liberator of eyeballs, improvised body disposal expert. That isn’t the full extent of Vaughn’s MO in S Craig Zahler’s unflinchingly violent Brawl in Cell Block 99 but it’s a start.

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Dub Web Fest, now in its 3rd year, serves as a celebration of the storytelling power of the Internet. Uniting digital media and tech worlds, the festival provides a platform for original web series and short form digital content, as TV and Film production professionals come together in Dublin to showcase the best of what they can do online. This year, the festival makes its way to Smithfield, as the first details from the 2017 edition begin to arrive.

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The latest film by Alex Gibney is set for release in Irish and UK cinemas on the 10th of November. The documentary director has courted both awards and controversy for films like Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief and We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks will be exploring the Troubles in his film No Stone Unturned.

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