Lights, camera, popcorn…
A Star is Born
Box office gold
The Mamma Mia set have been lying in waiting for this moment. A cross-generational film with oodles of appeal, it is guaranteed to bring punters out in their droves. In fairness, Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut has a lot going for it but ultimately aces it because of the chemistry between him and Lady Gaga. She’s a revelation and everything clicks into place because of it. The story is basic – boozy country singer at his peak meets aspiring starstruck starlet who eventually eclipses him. It’s solid, the original soundtrack is impressive and there’s enough human drama to hold it together. It will deservedly receive a rake of nominations. We just hope there’s better films and performances out there who will pip it in the end. Opens Oct 5
Rosie’s family lose their home when their landlord decides to sell leaving them facing the bleak reality of Dublin 2018. With a note-perfect script by Roddy Doyle, director Paddy Breathnach achieves an intimacy that few family-centred films do.
Sarah Greene and Moe Dunford are the parents negotiating their newfound circumstances over the span of two days. There are no arch-villains, save for a system that could allow for an upstanding, hardworking couple to be consigned to such a fate. A vital piece of work, especially in the context of recent eviction controversies, made better still by its nuance and insight.
Opens Oct 12
The Silver Branch
Whistle in the wind
The Silver Branch centres around the highly publicised and community dividing plans by the government’s Office of Public Works to build a large scale interpretive centre at Mullaghmore in the Burren area in the 1990’s. First-time director Katrina Costello skillfully uses the building of this interpretive centre as a McGuffin.
Opens Oct 5
Scream and Shout
It’s been 40 years since Laurie Strode survived a vicious attack from crazed killer Michael Myers on Halloween night. Locked up in an institution, Myers manages to escape when his bus transfer goes horribly wrong. Laurie now faces a terrifying showdown when the masked madman returns to Haddonfield. Director David Gordon Green (Pineapple Express. Our Brand is Crisis) gets under the mask. The body count dissipates the tension somewhat but we got to have Jamie Lee Curtis hang out in town for a bit.
Opens Oct 19
The Lonely Battle of Thomas Reid
A minimalist, moving, portrait.
Feargal Ward’s highly arresting documentary tells the story of Thomas Reid, a farmer living in Leixlip, County Kildare. Reid fell victim to the government’s Industrial Development Authority when it was legally decreed that ownership of his farm must pass to them, despite Reid’s wishes, for the purpose of attracting foreign investment.
Ward’s work is a minimalist, moving portrait of Reid, the 50-something year old who lives and works alone. For the duration of the film, the camera’s illuminating eye almost never strays from Thomas’s farmstead, and the effect produced speaks equally to Thomas’s intimacy with his land, his close relationship with his animals etc., and to his isolation from human society.
Opens Oct 19