It’s easy to be cynical when it comes to movies for kids, especially during the summer. A succession of safe, loud, obnoxious films are nearly always lined up for the school break months, lingering at the box office until well into September. Even the quality ones with craft and ambition put into them can feel like IP-introductory exercises, maintaining brand awareness in the first two quadrants into infinity and beyond. But be cynical no more! (Maybe get a bit of lunch in and lighten up…)
The IFI Family Film Festival, the Irish Film Institute’s annual event of cinema catered to young viewers, returns in July with a programme of international treats to entertain film fans of all ages, whatever the weather.
Films from around the globe, both feature length and series of shorts, will be shown at the Family Film Festival, including a number of Irish premieres. From Sweden to Japan to India, many of the films in this year’s programme feature common theme of their young characters trying to find their own way against family traditions. Biodiversity and conservation play a part as well, featuring in the festivals opener and closer. Comedic performances, cultural displays and more will all be a feature of the festival as always, providing a wide range of entertainment for all attendees.
Taking place from the 26th to the 28th of July, the festival will be kicking off with an afternoon of family fun in the IFI lobby with a tropical theme from 5.30 on Friday the 26th, hosted by RTÉjr’s Clara Murray. Tropical dress is encouraged as your kids make their way through a makeshift rainforest packed with minibeasts! This will be followed by the festival’s first film, the action-packed family animation Miniscule – Mandibles from Far Away.
All films at the IFI Family Film Festival cost €5.50, while aFamily Ticket for film events is available for €16.50 (2 adults, 2 children/1 adult, 3 children). Films for under 9s in the programme that contain subtitles will have those read aloud by an experienced reader.
In the dazzling Miniscule – Mandibles from Far Away, a daddy ladybird discovers his young son is missing and brings together his old insect crew to help in the search. The errant insect meanwhile has landed on a patch of rainforest in Guadeloupe that is at risk of destruction. The rescue squad hatch an elaborate plan to rescue junior and save the rainforest too.
The festival’s closing film will be Storm Boy, the latest adaptation of a popular Australian book. A businessman recounts his childhood experience of befriending an orphaned pelican near his isolated home. Magnificent landscapes, magic, tradition and memory make for an unforgettable tale featuring Geoffrey Rush and Jai Courteney among the cast.
Check our the full programme for the festival below:
Friday July 26th
17.30 OPENING NIGHT EVENT
18.30 MINISCULE – MANDIBLES FROM FAR AWAY (MINUSCULE – MANDIBLES DU BOUT DU MONDE) – RECOMMENDED AGE: 6+
Saturday July 27th
11.00 SHORT TALES 1 – RECOMMENDED AGE: 4+
13.00 SHORT TALES 2 – RECOMMENDED AGE: 8+
15.30 CHUSKIT – RECOMMENDED AGE: 8+
18.30 SUNE VS. SUNE – RECOMMENDED AGE: 9+
Sunday July 28th
11.00 PEEK ZOO SPECIAL – RECOMMENDED AGE: 4+
11.15 A TOWN CALLED PANIC (PANIQUE AU VILLAGE) – RECOMMENDED AGE: 10+
13.00 OKKO’S INN (WAKA OKAMI WA SHÔGAKUSEI!) – RECOMMENDED AGE: 8+
16.00 STORM BOY – RECOMMENDED AGE: 8+