Volume 27 Issue 11-12/Volume 28 Issue 1 / November–January 2024

Irish Cinema

The Wind That Shakes the Barley (photo source, IFC Films)

There is a variety and diversity to this issue dedicated to the contemporary Irish Cinema industry, with a look at the documentary and transgenerational trauma (Laine Immell), representations of the Irish Revolution (David Hanley), independent cinema interviews with George Kane and Italian transplanted to Ireland Chiara Viale (David Hanley), an apprecation of Lorcan Finnegan's horror/fantastic films (Donato Totaro) and Kate Dolan's 'mother' horror You Are Not My Mother (Emer O'Toole), an analysis of The Banshees of Inisherin (Daniel Garrett) and more. I will let Elaine Lennon's abstract to her sprawling three-part article on Regionalism in contemporary Irish cinema serve as a partial introduction to this triple issue. "Recent regional Irish films exhibit the emergence of new voices. These films speak to a new emphasis on rurality, with regional areas outside the urban centres creating a spate of site-specific narratives that navigate territories shorn of recognizable and iconic landmarks, physically and philosophically distanced from previous city-based works. This announces a re-territorialising of landscapes and locales marked by previous visiting filmmakers, from Robert O’Flaherty, John Ford and David Lean, to Stanley Kubrick and Alan Parker. As much ordnance as critical survey, this queries the influence of official agencies in film funding- something that indicates a wider view of cinema’s potential in attracting tourism: an ironic move in a country which has seen its population almost double due to foreign immigration in the past twenty-five years. Irish filmmakers appear to be taking back control. But as the narrative of the country alters irrevocably, what exactly are they saying? And do these films cohere around a single focal concern in modern Irish life or are they telling the same old stories?" Concluding the issue are a four non-Irish cinema articles. On January 16, 2024, Offscreen contributor Donald Brackett's book on the films of Billy Wilder and Charles Brackett, Double Solitaire: The Films of Charles Brackett and Billy Wilder, went on sale world-wide. For this special event we feature Brackett's own reflections on the Wilder/Brackett legacy. Josh Polanski does double duty with a report on the 27th Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (PӦFF), which includes his thoughts on the unique 3D Lithuanian film Twittering Soul and an accompanying interview with its director, the multi-modal artist Deimantas Narkevičius. And then concluding 2023 with his own unique approach to the classic "best of the year" lists, Peter Rist gives us his usual historical lists on the best films of 100 and 101 years ago, 1922 and 1923. This triple issue brings 2023 to a close while opening up to 2024. (Donato Totaro, ed., with a helping hand from Elaine Lennon and David Hanley)

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