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It’s a little bit chilly out there as we step into December, isn’t it? For those dreaming of sand and surf rather than snow and…sludge, the Irish Film Institute will be hosting a trio of documentaries this weekend about surfing, in Ireland and abroad. They’ll be looking at the Mavericks who live among the waves in these interesting docs, including previous successes screened at the IFI this year as well as a new Irish premiere.

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November 24 -26 will see the return of Dub Web Fest, Ireland’s celebration of online storytelling. Now in its third year, this film festival curated for online programming will have among its programme a MasterClass workshop in editing to be delivered by the experienced and renowned Irish editor Tony Kearns. From advertisements of the likes of Lynx, the Lotto and Playstation to acclaimed music videos including ‘Just’ by Radiohead and ‘Firestarter’ by The Prodigy, chances are high that you’ve seen his work, even if you haven’t realised it. More recently, Kearns has edited a number of feature films, including Cardboard Gangsters, the true crime drama set in the heart of Darndale. Film In Dublin spoke with Tony ahead of Dub Web Fest, to get his insights into the editing process.

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Attention Irish horror fans! Lock in is an intense psychological horror feature film from writer/director Malcolm Deegan. The film tells the story of Robert O’ Rourke, a recluse who struggles day by day to remember his identity. Closed away from the outside world, Robert is plagued by visions that may or may not be real.  Soon Robert awakens into a nightmare that is very real and will change him forever. The film is currently seeking production funding to help complete the project, turning to crowdfunding to ensure their film gets made.

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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.

 

The Dublin Doc Fest was founded by Tess Motherway in 2013 and since then, the festival has showcased short documentary films from both Irish and international filmmakers. Half a decade in to highlighting eye-opening documentaries in its carefully curated programmes, Dublin Doc Fest 2017 has now announced its selection of films for this year’s edition, with 14 films representing 8 countries for 1 night of provocative, non-fiction cinema.

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Yesterday saw the beginning of the 2017 Ranelagh Arts Festival, a celebration of the arts in all their forms right in the heart of Dublin’s southside. Located right across from the Luas line at the Arts Centre in Ranelagh Village, the festival, now in its 7th year, has over the years featured local artists and musicians, performances by children from the area, poetry, plays, film, history and photography. Internationally recognised artists that have been part of Ranelagh Arts include Paul Brady, Maura O’Connell, John Banville, Anne Enright, Anthony Cronin, Ken Doherty, Donal O’Sullivan and our the screen legend Maureen O’Hara. Running until the 8th of October, there are plenty of events to see and take part in, which you can read more about here, but we at Film In Dublin are happy to see Irish films and local talent being showcased over the next few days and wanted to make sure you knew about it too.

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This year saw the introduction of a new film festival in the ranks of Dublin’s long list of varied film programming. The Dublin Sci-Fi Film Festival showcased genre filmmaking new and old in Smithfield this May. Film In Dublin were happy to be in attendance at the inaugural edition of the festival, with myself serving on the jury for the festival’s shorts programme. DSFFF is looking to expand even further in 2018, and have opened submissions now to filmmakers looking to submit their science-fiction shorts and features to potentially be shown when the festival returns to Smithfield next year.

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One of the flagship festivals and highlights in the calendar of the Irish Film Institute, the IFI Documentary Festival begins tomorrow, running over the weekend into the beginning of October. The festival will showcase fine documentary filmmaking from directors, Irish directors alongside international ones, for a programme of 16 feature length documentaries, 7 Irish premieres, as well as a world premiere.

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Director: Stephen Burke Starring: Tom Vaughan-Lawlor, Barry Ward, Martin McCann Running Time: 92 minutes

Maze tells the story of the mass breakout of 38 IRA prisoners from the HMP Maze prison, which was built specifically for them, in 1983.

Maze‘s efforts to humanise all sides of the Troubles, including those suffering on the side lines, make it a compelling watch. Stephen Rennick’s gentle soundtrack and the cool blues of the prison are sublime.

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