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More than 100 women are said to have taken part directly in the Rising. Many were members of the republican organisation Cumann na mBan, which declared in its constitution an explicit commitment to the use of force by arms against crown forces in Ireland, alongside its equality agenda.
Doctors and nurses doubled as daring despatch riders. They made food for Irish Volunteers, treated the wounded and — like Markievicz who shot dead a policeman near St Stephen’s Green early during the Rising hostilities — fought side-by-side with the men. from EasterRising1916.ie
We have our dates picked out for our 24th season and most of our films, although some changes may still be made. It's the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising and that has played a role in the programming for our weekend. Click on the images in the banner, or on Women in the Rising, to learn more. Sign up if you'd like to be on our email list and get our latest updates. Visit our Members' page to read how to enrol as a member for our 2016 Season - increased to $70 this year.
101 min - Dir: Stephen Bradley with: Deirdre O'Kane, Sarah Greene, Gloria Cramer Curtis, Brendan Coyle, Liam Cunningham.
How do you capture a personality so enormous as Christina Noble? Over the last quarter of a century, the indomitable Dubliner has toiled energetically to improve the lot of orphaned and abandoned children in South East Asia. Those public achievements ask a great deal of a biographical film-maker, but it is, perhaps, harder still to get any grip on Noble's tragic, puzzling, occasionally fantastic personal journey.
Stephen Bradley's response in his big, thumping bruiser of a film has been to unplug the tearducts, ramp up the period detail and fuel the melodrama. Noble is rarely subtle. The depictions of the heroine's life in grim mid-century Ireland have all the dustily picturesque misery of a Catherine Cookson adaption (by most accounts, Noble's early experiences were considerably worse than those represented in the film).
More than a few characters telegraph their looming narrative arcs within seconds of appearing on screen: the creepy sex tourist; the initially resistant, ultimately helpful, functionary; the nun who seems "nice at first". Yet there is no doubt that the thing works.
Bradley, who writes and directs, employs an effective twin narrative. We begin with Noble, in the adult form of Deirdre O'Kane, making her first journey to Vietnam during the 1980s. She checks in at a down-at-heel hotel and, before too long, has begun the benign meddling that characterises so many of the most effective charity campaigners. Every now and then we flash back to find the young Christina growing up in Ireland. The film would be nothing without robust actors. Happily, Bradley has dragged out two excellent turns to support O'Kane's sturdy lead. Gloria Cramer Curtis is irrepressible as the childhood Noble: a noisy, capable scamp who loved to warble the songs of Doris Day. The Tony and Olivier-nominated Sarah Greene, one of our best young actors, is nothing less than magnificent as Christina in late adolescence and young adulthood. Her friendship with Ruth Negga's) plucky fireball has the makings of a film in its own right. Irish Times - Donald Clarke
In 1989, Irishwoman Christina Noble (Dierdre O'Kane) arrives in Ho Chi Minh City as a fortysomething tourist after a lifetime of coming to terms with her horrendous childhood and adolescence in Dublin. She grew up in a slum, lost her mother to tuberculosis and her father (spiritually, anyway) to drink, and was a ward of both the state and the Catholic church. She spent much of her teens and twenties suppressing her agony over those traumas and new ones, including an unplanned pregnancy ending in adoption. The sight of so many homeless kids on the streets of Ho Chi Minh city awakens the adult Christina's submerged maternal impulse. After trying and failing to help kids personally (bringing two girls to stay with her at her hotel; taking a gaggle of kids to eat in a restaurant on her tab) she decides to start a shelter, and is granted a permit. The catch: she has just three months to find a local partner and fund and build the place, after which point her tourist visa (which was always shaky thanks to her disruptive do-gooding) will expire.
Bradley's script jumps around in time, starting with the childhood of young Christina (Gloria Cramer Curtis), which is envisioned subjectively, less as a documentary report than as scene one in a self-creation myth. The sooty 1940s urban panoramas, complete with piles of rubble and hand-washed clothes hanging from laundry lines and fire escapes, have the funereal grandness of Alan Parker's film version of "Angela's Ashes", but there's also a genuinely (and literally) lyrical undertow produced by young Christina's angelic singing voice (she wants to be a great musical star like Doris Day) which echoes on the soundtrack during key scenes. RogerEbert.com - Matt Zoller Seitz
94 min - Dir: John Butler with: Andrew Scott, Peter McDonald, Hugh O'Conor, Amy Huberman, Brian Gleeson.
:: Guest Speaker: John Butler, Director
The Stag is a film with both a heart and a brain, an exploration of male interplay wrapped around a drama about friendships and romance, both of the fulfilled and failed kinds. - Never Felt Better blog [David Costelloe]
This present account - of a wayward walking weekend in Wicklow - at least forms one of the more likable variations (…on The Hangover), holding back the willy-waving to examine how a set of middle-class Irishmen might well interact if pushed beyond their usual boundaries. - The Guardian [Mike McCahill]
A stag weekend gone wrong is the basis for a surprising amount of comic depth, minus the excesses of the Hangover franchise …this innocuous but good-hearted Irish comedy finds a misfit group of men going native in the woods when a fussy groom is strong-armed into a stag weekend by his altogether more forceful bride. - Observer [Mark Kermode]
The Machine is a cultural figure for an older and unreconstructed Irish machismo and his knack for roughing-up his smoother, more contemporary fellows conveys real comedic truth. - The Irish Post [Stephen Martin]
Chaos strikes when an engaged man (Hugh O'Conor), his future brother-in-law (Peter McDonald)
and a group of friends go hiking in the Irish wilderness for a bachelor party.
The Stag tells the story of a very modern Irish groom-to-be who, at his fiancee's urging, reluctantly agrees to a stag weekend with his urbane friends, wild camping in the west of Ireland.
Much to their chagrin, the brother of the bride - 'The Machine' - a crazy, unpredictable alpha male, and an explosive Id to their collective Ego joins these modern men. Irish Film Board
Some day, all male-centred comedies will be modelled after
This present account - of a wayward walking weekend in Wicklow - at least forms one of the more likable variations,
holding back the willy-waving to examine how a set of middle-class Irishmen might well interact if pushed beyond their usual boundaries.
As the BBC's short-lived The Great Outdoors recognised, there's considerable mileage in the way these jaunts throw together diverse types.
The process by which Andrew Scott's lovelorn best man is undermined by alpha-ish interloper Peter McDonald is well-observed, while the inclusion of two gay travellers rather smartly sidesteps one of this subgenre's signature panics. One or two set pieces don't quite have the requisite heft, yet the movie clicks whenever co-writer/director John Butler stops to admire the scenery: his fine cast locate the material's underlying pathos, and sustain a funny riff involving the one walker who can't stand U2 ("You are Irish, right?"). The Guardian - Mike McCahill
"You rampant hurrrmurrrsexuahlists" is the somewhat grandiloquent expression one character uses to address his fellow men in John Butler's outdoor-pursuits comedy The Stag, a slapstick romp that mischievously implies Irishmen are not so tough as they used to be.
The man who makes this elongated utterance is called 'The Machine', played by Peter McDonald who makes a welcome return to our cinema screens.
McDonald co-scripted The Stag along with Butler and they clearly think the time is right for aiming humorous darts at the target of contemporary Irish masculinity - in all its post-Tiger, post-modern, metrosexual complexity. The Irish Post - Stephen Martin
78 min - Dir: Mark Noonan with: Aidan Gillen, Lauren Kinsella, George Pistereanu, Erika Sainte, Jesse Morris.
102 min - Dir: Terry McMahon with: Moe Dunford, Kerry Fox, Catherine Walker, Philip Jackson, Aaron Monaghan
xx min - Dir: director with: cast
:: Guest Speaker: [TBA] [to be announced]
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90 min - Dir: Ian Power with: Peter Coonan, Orla Fitzgerald, David Murray
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