The China Ireland International Film Festival brings the best of China to Irish shores and screens

The China Ireland International Film Festival aims to introduce the best Chinese filmmakers and film works to Ireland, brings Chinese films to the Irish film audience, allowing a more direct experience of Chinese art. In the same vein, a number of Irish films will be screened during the festival, the better to share some of the best of Irish filmmaking in the 21st century.

Festival organisers have described the aims and ambitions of CIIFF:

Film, as a tool for dream building, is the best way to promote cross-cultural understanding. On the 40th anniversary of the establishment of Sino-Irish diplomatic relations, the first China Ireland International Film Festival (CIIFF) will be held in Dublin, Ireland. This film festival, with films as the carrier, driven by “One Belt, One Road” initiative, aims to faciliate cultural communication between China and Ireland and open a new chapter of Sino-Irish cultural exchange.

The festival will promote connections between Chinese film professionals and those in Ireland, leading to in-depth exchanges on multi-faceted cooperation in the future. While promoting cooperation on a film programming level, CIIFF will also work as a communicative platform for film interchange between China and Ireland. Delegations from Chinese film studios and organisations will meet with Screen Ireland and Culture Ireland to host discussions on co-productions; Ireland as a filming location, and the opportunities for Irish films to enter the Chinese market after the increase in foreign film quotas.

CIIFF is organised by the UCD Confucius Institute for Ireland and CIIFF Organizing Committee in association with ChangChun Film Group, Cartoon Saloon and Ireland Chinese Journal. The Festival is supported by the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Ireland, Information Office of People’s Government of Jilin Province, Culture Ireland, Screen Ireland, Screen Directors Guild of Ireland, Screen Producers Ireland and The Writers Guild of Ireland. Official Media partners are Ireland Chinese Journal and Nouvelles d’Europe.

Check out the full schedule for the China Ireland International Film Festival below.

10:00-16:00 daily from 24th-29th June
Chinese Hand-Craft Film Posters Exhibition
Exhibition hall at UCD Confucius Institute for Ireland
(Admission Free)

Monday 24th June

1911 辛亥革命
Light House Cinema
The story closely follows key events of the Xinhai Revolution, with focus on Huang Xing and Sun Yat-sen. It begins with the Wuchang Uprising of 1911 and follows through historical events such as the Second Guangzhou Uprising on 27 April 1911, the deaths of the 72 martyrs, the election of Sun Yat-sen as the provisional president of the new Provisional Republic of China, the abdication of the last Qing dynasty emperor Puyi on 12 February 1912, and Yuan Shikai becoming the new provisional president in Beijing on 10 March 1912.
1911, also known as Xinhai Revolution and The 1911 Revolution, is a 2011 Chinese historical drama film.The film is a tribute to the 100th anniversary of the Xinhai Revolution. It is also Jackie Chan’s 100th film in his career. Besides starring in it, Chan is also the executive producer and co-director of the film. Co-stars include Chan’s son Jaycee Chan, Li Bingbing, Winston Chao, Joan Chen and Hu Ge. This film was selected to open the 24th Tokyo International Film Festival.


CIIFF Opening Ceremony
Speakers include: Prof. Ling Wang, Chairman of CIIFF Committee;
Seán Ó Fearghaíl, Ceann Comhairle of Dáil Éireann, NAME?? Deputy Inspector of Propaganda Department of Jilin Province and H.E. He Xiangdong-Chinese Ambassador to Ireland
Lighthouse cinema Screen 1

Mr. Deng Goes to Washington  风九日
(including post screening Q&A with Director Mr. Fu Hongxing and producer Mrs. Lv Muzi)
Lighthouse Cinema Screen 1
On January 1, 1979, China and the United States re-established full diplomatic relations. A few weeks later, Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping made an official visit to the United States, a trip that would go down in the history books. With first-person accounts from ex-presidents and government leaders from China and the U.S., Mr. Deng Goes to Washington chronicles the highlights of Deng’s visit, a trip that produced no shortage of news, including that of an attempted attack on the Chinese leader. This is the story of Deng Xiaoping’s nine-day trip, one that would mark a new chapter in China-U.S. relations.

Tuesday 25th June

Cineworld  Screen 6
A modern day musical set on the streets of Dublin. Featuring Glen Hansard and his Irish band “The Frames,” the film tells the story of a street musician and a Czech immigrant during an eventful week as they write, rehearse and record songs that reveal their unique love story.


The Crossing 过春天
Light House Cinema
Studying in Hong Kong but living in Shenzhen (the port city of Mainland China), Peipei has spent 16 years of her life travelling between these two cities. To realize the dream of seeing snow in Japan with her bestie, Peipei joins a smuggling gang and uses her student identity to smuggle iPhones from Hong Kong to the Mainland. Her family life and friendships begin to fall apart. The daily life of Peipei starts to get out of control.

A First Farewell 第一次的离
Lighthouse Cinema Screen 3
Isa Yasan is a Muslim boy from the countryside in Xinjiang, China. His mother was left deaf
and mute from meningitis, and she frequently wanders away from home. Isa loves his mother deeply, and is torn between taking care of her, going to school and doing farm work. He is friends with a lively little girl named Kalbinur. They are taking care of an adorable lamb together.  Kalbinur’s grades in her Uyghur are good, but her Chinese scores are terrible. Since Chinese is the national language, her mother wants to move to the city and find temporary work so Kalbinur can go to a Chinese school. Her father doesn’t agree to the plan, and the two argue a lot. That winter, Isa’s father decides to send Isa’s mother to a nursing home, and Kalbinur’s family makes plans to leave the village. Isa reads a story called “A First Farewell” in school, and although he does not fully understand the idea of farewell, he will soon experience it himself.

Wednesday 26th June

China Ireland Film Industry Exchange Seminar at UCD Confucius Institute for Ireland
Speakers include:
Prof. Liming Wang Chairman of CIIFF Committee
Teresa McGrane, Screen Ireland
Mr. Fu Hongxing, director of Mr. Deng Goes to Washington
Li Qinghui, ChangChun Film Group
Steven Davenport, Screen Ireland
Paul Young, Cartoon Saloon
Christine Sisk, Culture Ireland
Wang Oujia, Head of Culture Department of the Chinese Embassy in Ireland

The Assassins 铜雀台
During the Three Kingdoms period, Cao Cao stands as the last pillar of power preventing the collapse of the Han throne. Emperor Xian, who sits on that throne, cares more about music and poems than his own power. But behind the Emperor’s disinterest, rumours that Cao Cao wants the throne for himself have driven Emperor Xian to plot Cao Cao’s assassination, a plan that’s been years in the making. An ancient prophecy states that when the four elemental starts align, a new dynasty will arise, and in 221 A.D., they do. With the weakened government and impending omen, Cao Cao has enemies everywhere, and they all want him dead. Someone has been abducting the children of Cao Cao’s dead enemies and training them to be assassins. In 221, they are grown, and sent to infiltrate Bronze Sparrow Tower. When the four stars align over Bronze Sparrow Tower, the struggle for Cao Cao’s life begins…

The Widowed Witch 北方一片苍茫
Light House Cinema
After losing her house and husband, a rural woman leads a stranded life with her 10-year-old brother-in-law in a modified “recreational vehicle”. To find a warm place to survive the cold winter, she pretends to be a shaman who can rid villagers of evil spirits, and ironically, her juggled deceits often become real. However, she soon loses her power to people’s greed and apathy, and in meagre attempts of salvation, her life story eventually ends in tragedy and disillusion.

The Sword Identity 倭寇的踪迹
(including post screening Q&A with Director of Photography Meng Xiaoqing)
Light House Cinema
Once upon a time in the Southern Chinese city of Guancheng, there lived four families, each
of them faithful keepers of martial arts. Anyone who wanted to establish a new sect, or a new form of kung fu, had to fight his way through the family’s gates. But when Liang Henlu requests a competition, he is rejected and driven out of town, his strange new weapon mistaken for a Japanese sword and therefore forbidden by purist Chinese masters as a foreign fighting device. Liang is taken for a Japanese pirate and forced to hide in a boat filled with gypsy dancers. After a series of fights prove Liang’s sword invincible, the Guancheng masters start to question their assumptions regarding the weapon’s origins. They finally recognize that it is none other than the famous sword called ‘Made in China’ (modeled on a Japanese weapon), which the celebrated General Qi used in his glorious defeat of the Japanese invasion.

Thursday 27th June

The Woman Behind the Man 老阿姨

UCD Cinema
The film “the Woman Behind the Man” is based on the true story of the 93-year-old national moral model Gong Quanzhen. It tells the story of the Republic founding general Gan Zuchang and Gong Quanzhen’s story of 30 years life together. In 1950, Gong Quanzhen  joined the army and went to Xinjiang to serve as a teacher of Xinjiang Bayi Primary School.  She was married to the Xinjiang Military Region Logistics Director Gan Zuchang who is 18 years older than herself. Gan Zuchang was injured three times in the war. He often had headaches and could not work normally. He asked to return to his hometown as a farmer. There was no precedent in the country for a general returning to the countryside as a peasant. After three years of making applications, it was approved. Gong Quanzhen also came to Jiangxi with her husband. They have experienced the ups and downs of the times. After Gan Zuchang’s death, Gong Quanzhen passed on the spirit of Gan Zuchang, led his children to diligently save, work hard, help poor families and out-of-school children, and live their legendary life with great love. In 2013, Gong Quanzhen was named a national moral model, received by President Xi Jinping, and was called the old aunt by President Xi Jinping.

Mr. Deng Goes to Washington风九日
(including post screening Q&A with Director Fu Hongxing)

The Sword Identity 倭寇的踪迹
UCD Cinema

Friday 28th June

The Sun大太阳
UCD Cinema
Tang Dachuan and Yinxing were married for many years, and had a son. Unexpectedly, their son was killed in the 5.12 earthquake (Wenchuan). Yingxing could not accept the fact that she had lost her son, and lived in a nightmare for a long time. The pain in her heart made her nervous. Her husband, Dachuan, can feel all this but couldn’t help her. After the disaster relief, Yinxing set up a stall selling sacrifices in the ruins, and also set up a telescope for visitors to view the ruins. Dachuan took care of Yinxing and gave up the opportunity to work in Guangdong. He opened a restaurant in his hometown. The newly hired waiter Taozi in the store was a widow. Her husband was also killed in the earthquake. The same experience made Dachuan very sympathetic. Later, Dachuan’s younger brother, Ermang, took a fancy to Taozi. Finally, the two got together with help of the people around them …..

Song of the Sea
(including post-screening Q&A)

Song of the Sea tells the story of Ben and his little sister Saoirse – the last Seal-child who embark on a fantastic journey across a fading world of ancient legend and magic in an attempt to return to their home by the sea.

Nominated for ‘Best Animated Feature’ at the 2015 Academy Awards Song of the Sea is the much anticipated second feature from Tomm Moore (director of The Secret of Kells) and features the voices of Brendan Gleeson (Harry Potter), Fionnula Flanagan (A Christmas Carol), David Rawle (tv’s Moone boy) and singer Lisa Hannigan.

Cableway Doctor

 UCD Cinema
Cableway Doctor is based on the national moral model – Deng Qiandui, a rural doctor in Shiyueliang Township, Fugong County, Yunnan Province. Deng Qiang was risking his life and sliding across the river on a rope to and from the banks of the Nu River. He managed to provide the people with medicine and through his persistence he helped improve the health of the people.

Saturday 29th June

5 Best Short Films (China)
UCD Cinema

5 Best Short Films (Ireland)
UCD Cinema

(All times subject to change)


About Luke Dunne

Luke is a writer, film addict and Dublin native who loves how much there is for film fans in his home county. A former writer for FilmFixx and the Freakin' Awesome Network, he founded Film In Dublin to pursue his dual dreams of writing about film and never sleeping ever again.

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