Experimental Irish short Masks coming soon


An Irish short released next Wednesday will take an innovative approach to the pandemic, both in subject matter and assembly. Masks will be released on Wednesday, August 11th.

Masks is a new short film by Dublin filmmaker Conor Tobin, a dreamlike piece which captures some of the complex and paradoxical feelings born out of the pandemic experience.

Whilst the pandemic rages, Saoirse rides a train into the city, determined to get a pint, but also determined to ward off her own melancholic existential thoughts. In the pub, we meet a host of characters; a woman waiting for a date, two good friends and their bored girlfriends, a waitress who’d rather be anywhere else but there. A sense of magic hangs in the air in this pub. Little moments seem grand and strange as Saoirse considers making contact with the guy sitting at a nearby table.

 

Masks is loosely based on Conor’s own experiences of a night out when the pubs had opened briefly in December 2020. The film’s narrative centres around its protagonist Saoirse (Angel Hannigan) while also floating from character to character in a free form way. In this dreamlike world, the characters seem stuck but there is also the possibility of change and transformation.

Conor worked with the actors, rewriting scenes based on rehearsals over zoom, and allowed them to improvise heavily at key moments. As such there is a heavy experimental element to this film which has been baked into the project from the start.

Stars are a recurring motif throughout the piece, specifically in the lighting in the pub and in Saoirse’s dialogue. As described by the director, “I have always equated stars with the great beyond, the unknown, something eternal.

 

It also calls up the famous Oscar Wilde quote, “We’re all in the gutter, but some of us are looking to the stars.” The sense of being stuck during lockdown while at the same time there is a sea of infinite possibility.

James Joyce was also an influence for this short. The dreamlike narratives he weaved in Ulysses and Finnegan’s Wake were a big inspiration to Conor. When Joyce spoke of Dublin as an alternate “eternal city” to Rome he set the scene for taking the ordinary and hum drum and elevating it. “In the particular lies the universal,” he once said. This is the spirit in which Conor set out to make Masks. Indeed, a Joyce mural can be seen behind Saoirse as she talks to Patrick outside the pub.

 

Conor will be participating in next week’s Fillum Chat with Emma Fagan, Thursday at 10pm. These chats provide an outlet for Irish filmmakers and creatives to get the word out on their work, so do tune in for a tweet for more on Masks before its release next week.

Luke Dunne
About me

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.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Son Of Man Iranian Film
Son Of Man launched by Silver Mountain Distribution
November 25, 2021
Ghostbusters: Afterlife
Ghostbusters: Afterlife is a movie released in November 2021.
November 19, 2021
Pretty Deadly Films 2001
Pretty Deadly Films 2001 Issue
November 16, 2021
Mildly Different
Jordanne Jones stars in short film Mildly Different next week at the Stella
November 10, 2021
Naughty or Nice Light House Christmas Movies
New & old faves at the Light House’s Naughty or Nice this Christmas
November 09, 2021
The French Dispatch
The French Dispatch Dispatch
October 27, 2021
Unwelcome Trailer
Unwelcome trailer promises a creature feature that will grab you
October 27, 2021
Dublin After Dark Oct 2021
Dublin After Dark finds frights in the fair city Oct 29th
October 22, 2021
Dune Part One
Dune gets lost in vast expanse
October 21, 2021

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.