From Ohio to Dublin: a once in a lifetime adventure full of leprechauns, potatoes, guinness and craic!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Film Lovers in Paradise

Sometimes it's nice to get lost in the city... or to at least walk a different way to class every once in a while. Just walking around town, you'll be surprised at what you see- whether it's a bunch of gypsy's trading horses on a sunday morning (literally...this is not a joke), a group of Irish kids having their first snowball fight or an advertisement for an upcoming event in the city.

This was the case with me while walking past the Irish Film Institute one day in January. The Jameson Dublin International Film Festival has been going on for the past 8 years. The festival lasts eleven days, showing over 120 films in six different theaters in Dublin. This not-for-profit organization is ran by hundreds of volunteers, the few I interacted with being extremely helpful and knowledgeable.

There were sooo many different films showing I couldn't decide which ones to see: French, American, Irish and Korean... comedy, drama and action....religion, sexuality, love and war. And it didn't help that the prices weren't bad either, ranging from 8 to 18 euro. I finally decided on two: Alice in Wonderland 3D and Lourdes.

I wasn't sure what to expect at all with this film festival... Do you dress up? Do you expect to run into someone famous? Do you show up early to get a good seat? Is it still socially acceptable to sneak candy in your purse (not that it ever is)? So a friend and I show up to Screen Cinema about 30 minutes before the film began and ended up waiting in the lobby for that long, shoulder to shoulder with eager and anxious film lovers who were attempting to work their way up to the front of the line like children at Disney world. We BOUGHT movie snacks and made our way in... turned out to be basically a normal movie theatre experience minus the woman to my direct right with the obnoxious laugh and plus the actors speaking French with English subtitles. It's not like it's every day you get the chance to see a French film on the big screen, so it was interesting.

Next a group of 5 of us saw Alice in Wonderland at Savoy on O'Connell Street... this was more like it. Not only did we get to wear really cool glasses for the whole experience, but we were in an 800 seat theatre which was completely sold out, while sitting in big comfy red chairs... So comfy, in fact, that my friend fell asleep in the middle of the film. Oh and not to mention there was a huge red curtain that made the movie a little more epic. It was an amazing movie, followed by two of the actors speaking and answering questions: the handsome and put-together White Rabbit (Michael Sheen) and the humorous and entertaining Bloodhound (Timothy Spall).
Michael Sheen and Timothy Spall
Bri, Me, Alex, Ben and Mackenzie post-Alice (still have my glasses)
Advice for people going next year: 1. Get your tickets in advance because you never know which ones will sell out. 2. See a foreign film (Non-American). At the very least you get the chance to listen to a really cool foreign accent for an hour or two, but you'll probably find something that you like about it. 3. Try to see one in Savoy... the theater is HUGE and so nice. 4. Try out the "surprise film" (which always sells out) or a special event!

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