Free public lunchtime screenings of international films and Irish shorts, celebrating ageing, are on offer all week at 1 pm from May 18th-22nd in the auditorium of NUIG's new ILAS (Institute for Lifecourse and Society) building in Corrib Village, Upper Newcastle Road. ILAS' superb new 250-seater movie venue has a theatre-size screen, surround-sound, and wheelchair access.
Marking Ireland's Bealtaine Festival, the fourth ‘Reel Lives Film Festival' is organised by the Irish Centre for Social Gerontology (www.icsg.ie) and is this year screening: Nebraska; When Did You Last See Your Father? Robot and Frank; My Afternoons With Margueritte; and My Old Lady.
The festival opens with Nebraska, telling the story of an ageing father (Bruce Dern) on a road trip with his son from Montano to Nebraska to claim a million dollar sweepstakes prize. Brilliant acting, poignant and hilarious in parts.
When Did You Last See Your Father? stars Colin Firth, Jim Broadbent, and a host of well-known faces. A restrained script and effortless acting show Firth watching his father (Broadbent) die, whilst reflecting on their troubled relationship across the lifecourse. A well-crafted film.
Robot and Frank is set in the near future when household robots are the norm. The cantankerous Frank, an elderly divorcee, lives slothfully alone until his son forces the robot on him to improve his lifestyle. Their initial fractious relationship turns into genuine friendship once Frank, a former jewel thief, recruits robot into a life of crime. A plausible peek into a world in which an older person tries to deal with his accelerating dementia and new technology. Stars the compelling Frank Langella.
My Afternoons with Margueritte (French with English sub-titles), starring the charismatic Gerard Dépardieu. Dépardieu's performance as an illiterate and lonely man befriending an older and well-read woman (Gisele Casadesus) makes this film a gentle gem. Quirky, moving, and very funny - you won't even notice it's not in English.
The festival closes with My Old Lady starring the irrepressible Maggie Smith, Kevin Kline and Kristin Scott-Thomas. Beautifully shot in Paris, the film is both funny and touching. Kline inherits a glamorous apartment in Paris, but also its resident ‘viager' (Smith). Cue an inter-generational scrap over property and the meaning of life. Not to be missed.
Irish shorts being screened include: Bye Bye Now (disappearance of rural telephone boxes), Jericho (widower getting help from his childhood friend), Holding On (man's Alzheimer's impacting on his family), and Sue Mills (West of Ireland eco-friendly woman and her Meitheal).
In addition to free entry, audience members can enjoy complimentary soft drinks and sweets, and the chance to win a daily audience spot prize. There will also be a special pre-film choral performance by NUIG staff choir, Unitunes, on Thursday 21st at 1 pm, and a free guided walk of the Dangan area with Galway tour-guide Brendan Hynes on Friday 22nd at 4 pm.
Parking is available on campus to non-NUI Galway personnel within the pay and display areas of Dangan car park, or a free shuttle bus runs regularly between Dangan car park and the main campus.
Soft drinks and confectionary are courtesy of the Students' Union Shop NUIG. Spot prizes are sponsored by NUIG's Kingfisher Sports Centre, and Masterchefs Hospitality NUIG. The Reel Lives Film Festival poster is designed by artist Marina Wild, NUIG Arts Office.
For further information contact event organiser, Alison Herbert, 091-495461 / 087-2830757. Full details of the film programme are on: www.icsg.ie