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Director: Rian Johnson Starring: Daniel Craig, Jamie Lee Curtis, Michael Shannon, Don Johnson, Toni Collette, Chris Evans, Ana de Armas, Lakeith Stanfield, Katherine Langford, Jaeden Martell, Christopher Plummer Running Time: 130 minutes

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“The game is afoot” renowned mystery-solver Benoit Blanc knowingly crows during one of Knives Out‘s twisty turns, and it seems clear from the outset what game director Rian Johnson is playing here. However mixed (and wearingly unending) the reception may have been for Johnson’s last movie, the man clearly has strong support from Hollywood higher-ups, enough to fund a big “one for him” movie, a “dig out an old idea you’ve always wanted to do and hire everyone you’ve always wanted to work with” movie. And so we get Johnson’s loving homage to the murder mystery genre, a story he’s been kicking around since just after Brick, packed to the seams with rising talents, esteemed character actors and Hollywood royalty. And it’s a bloody delight. The opportunity to self-indulge to this extent is not a luxury every filmmaker is afforded, for what it’s worth though, Johnson uses the platform to delve into some unexpected areas worth examining. If you’re going to do something silly, you might as well do it smartly, which Knives Out accomplished on a number of levels.

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Filmmakers, film fans and other curious attendees mingled in the charming venue to enjoy mulled wine and hot chocolate before a screening of ten stunning short films at the iffy Short Film Festival last weekend.

The programme included eight films from Ireland and two international films with six of the shorts screened written and directed by women. Although the curators are clear to point out that a theme for the programme is never expressly chosen, this edition’s line up was very unique; touching on comedy, dance, theatre and horror all with an experimental twist.

Festival director Duncan McKenna had this to say about the festivals latest edition:

“iffy 4 was a resounding success. On the sellout night, there was a great vibe, good chats and 10 fantastic short films. For that we thank the volunteers, our sponsor Dept, and of course the filmmakers. We look forward to the next edition of iffy, and what that will become”

The winner of the “little iffy” award this year was  Legacy an experimental film by Derry-based writer and filmmaker Michael Barwise. Described as a journey into the collective gut of cats and Northern Ireland while exploring the lasting impact of violence and the domestication of trauma, the film was produced in association with Channel 4’s Random Acts and premiered on Film 4 as part of The Troubles on Film Season in September.

Describing the festival, director, writer and actor Anne Marie Kelly said:

This festival was a pleasure to attend. The organisers were lovely to deal with and they brought a cohesion to the audience experience with their enthusiasm and respect for film. Met some interesting professionals at the relaxed reception. Looking forward to the next one – I’ll be going for the pure enjoyment whether I have a film showing or not.

 

The fifth edition of iffy will take place on July 13th 2020. Submissions will be open to filmmakers from March 20th next year. Film fans can keep up to date with iffy on social media on Facebook , Twitter and Instagram

Director: Martin Scorsese Starring: Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, Al Pacino, Anna Paquin, Jesse Plemons, Bobby Cannavale, Ray Romano, Stephen Graham, Stephanie Kurtzuba, Harvey Keitel, Kathrine Narducci Running Time: 210 minutes

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There is a moment, deep in the runtime of The Irishman where Robert De Niro’s Frank Sheeran, a man decades in  service to the mafia, tries to talk Al Pacino’s Jimmy Hoffa out of going past a point of no return, Hoffa invoking the wrath of the mobsters he’s found himself in league with. It’s a key communication, a warning to a close friend to put aside his pride and stubborness in the face of certain death, a plea for cooler hands to prevail in a genre where they never do, as well as an internal clash of Sheeran’s loyalties and his warped sense of duty. The words, to say the least, don’t come easy. Sheeran is unable to conjure more than loaded stock phrases and inneundo, a sad Johnny Tightlips mumbling that “it is what it is”. In the mafia, you never say what it actually is, threats and confessions alike meant always to be dangled just out of reach, and the great Martin Scorsese’s pensive reflection of decades of crime shows how these delusions and denials erode a man from the inside over time. Weaving through the histories of these stubborn criminals, The Irishman lays bare just how hollow their power and legacies ultimately are, gently but firmly.”You don’t know how fast time goes by until you get there,” says Frank and the story of how gets there and what is left of him when he does is one of Scorsese’s finest in years. A slow, sad reflection of the past.

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“A sick film made by sick people for sick people” was how Nicolas Roeg’s Bad Timing was described by its own distributors, and if that sounds like the kind of film you absolutely must see, Fillum and the Generator have you covered this November.

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In the latest episode of the Breakout Role Podcast, Luke and Jess are joined by their first ever guest star, Luke’s girlfriend Grace Tiernan, to watch Tim Burton’s Beetlejuice, and have a good chat about young Winona Ryder’s #WinonaRyderBreakout.

During a long career in Hollywood, Winona Ryder has braved bullying, media scrutiny, Hollywood hypocrisy and more, and come through a difficult period in her career to find acclaim on Netflix’s Stranger Things. As a teenager, Winona was thrust into the spotlight playing goth girl Lydia in Burton’s ghoulish comedy. But was Beetlejuice a breakout or a fakeout for Winona? Listen in as Luke, Jess and Grace find out!

Listen in below or follow us on Apple Podcasts on SpotifySoundcloud or on Podbean

Artwork by @aaaacidwich

The Breakout Role Podcast Episode Archive

In the latest episode of the Breakout Role Podcast, Luke and Jess watch Robert Rodriguez’ follow-up to El Mariachi, Desperado, featuring the first starring role in Hollywood for Salma Hayek! #SalmaHayekBreakout

In her time in America, Salma Hayek has overcome stereotypes and stood up to sexism in the industry. From her turn in Desperado onwards, her chemistry with other actors and her ability to bring characters alive stood out. Was this a breakout or a fakeout for Salma? Listen in as Luke and Jess find out!

Listen in below or follow us on Apple Podcasts on SpotifySoundcloud or on Podbean

Artwork by @aaaacidwich

The Breakout Role Podcast Episode Archive

November at the Irish Film Institute is always a treat for fans of French cinema and this year is no different. The IFI French Film Festival begins next Wednesday and tickets are selling fast for some of the big titles in this year’s season, running from November 13th – 24th.

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Attaboy, Light House.

The Smithfield cinema have today announced the programme for their annual Naughty or Nice season, a selection of beloved Christmas classics and carefully curated deep-cuts. Every year the selection tends to bring out the naughty and nice in Dublin’s film fans as they cross in-laws and distant relatives off their gift lists in order to fit in a few more tickets to treat themselves with and Christmas 2019 is set to be no different. The usual lineup are all there with a few new, intriguing choices thrown in, it’s going to be a busy few weeks at the Light House from November 29th to December 31st.

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