Monday, 26 April 2010

One final update... and goodbye!

It can't have escaped your notice (if you're even still here) that I've been somewhat slack in updating this place recently, so apologies if you sent me something that I never got round to posting about. There are a whole other bunch of things that have taken up my time and in truth are likely to continute to do so, so rather than continue in a half-hearted way like this I've decided to lay this blog to rest. Hey, between this one and my previous blog I figure I've lasted longer than the average anyway.

So before I go, a final update on a few things Scottish and Irish.

On the Irish front:

The low-budget indie film WC, set in the toilet of a Dublin jazz bar, is now available on DVD in both the UK and the US, and you can see a clip from it here or see a short film on the making of it here.

The brilliant and controversial documentary Rocky Road to Dublin, already available in the UK and Ireland, is now available in the USA.

THE SECRET OF KELLS has apparently found a UK distributor - don't know yet if it'll be a cinema release or just DVD, but whatever method it finds its way to you in, make sure you see it.

And so to Scotland:

CRYING WITH LAUGHTER, CENTURION and VALHALLA RISING are all either already in cinemas in the UK or will be hitting this month.

There's a rare screening of 1940s Scottish island drama THE BROTHERS at the BFI on the 2nd of June.

ReelScotland is a useful new site for finding out what special film-related stuff is going on in Scotland.

Another Scottish island-set film, the rarely seen LAXDALE HALL, is now available on DVD from Panamint Cinema.

And that's it. The links to other sites here will probably give you more than enough to keep you informed in the future. Thanks to everyone who has read, commented, contributed, and to those whom I've offended, no hard feelings I hope.

My interests in Scottish and Irish cinema have not waned, I just won't be blogging about them anymore.


Thursday, 4 February 2010

SIX SEMESTERS - Irish indie on tour

SIX SEMESTERS is an Irish film which, despite being basically a feature-length student film made with next to zero budget, made it into the Wild Cards strand of last year's Galway Film Fleadh. I didn't see it there myself, but it has since gone on to get some more festival exposure in Europe and the USA, with more screenings possibly on the way.

In the meantime you can read more about it and watch a clip on this website, or you can also watch a making-of video on Youtube (part 1 here - I'm sure you can find the rest from there).

Keep an eye out at a festival near you.

Monday, 25 January 2010


Irish animated movie THE SECRET OF KELLS will be getting two screenings at the NFT/BFI in London in March. Saturday 13th at 14:10 sees it appearing in NFT3, before moving to NFT2 for a screening on Sunday 14th at 16:20.

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Richard Jobson films in focus

The Fifer Festival is running in Dunfermline for a few days in early March, and is a celebration of the work of local man Richard Jobson. In addition to a Skids reunion concert on the Saturday night, other events will include screenings of his films, exhibitions, workshops and an interview with Richard conducted by Ian Rankin. All events from Tuesday 2nd to Thursday 4th are free, or in other words the concert's the only thing that's going to cost you anything.

It all takes place at the newly refurbished Alhambra theatre. See full details on the website.

New at the IFI

Usually I trawl through the programme to see what new Irish film is on offer at the IFI but this month I'll simply direct you to the website where you can read a summary of the new plans for 2010 thanks to their new redevelopment. Sounds great.

Scottish festivals

The Glasgow Film Festival kicks off soon and is usually a great place to see Scottish filmmaking new and old. The programme is now online and features a couple of Irish films (HIS & HERS and SAVAGE) and a whole load of Scottish stuff that I'm not going to list again here. See the website to keep up to date.

Also, I thought I'd mention that there is a small film festival running as part of the Perth 800 City festival. It'll be at Perth Concert Hall from the 23rd-25th April so keep an eye on their website for further updates.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010


The excellent Irish short film SUGAR STICK is now viewable online for the duration of the Slamdance competition. Go here to watch it and if you like it you can register and vote for it.

Awards season

Awards season is here and there are a couple of interest to Scottish and Irish film, and they've just announced their nominations. First of all there's the Irish Film & Television Awards, which you can read more about here.

Then there's the Celtic Media Festival, who have announced their shortlist. There are some great films and TV programmes in here but if I had to pick any out I'd be hoping for wins for JONATHAN MEADES: OFF KILTER (even if he did slag off my home city), AN IOLAIRE, THE SECRET OF KELLS and SHETLAND LONE STAR. The feature length drama category is a very difficult one to pick too. See the list here.

Filmhouse in Feb

Thursday 25th February sees the Filmhouse's Made in Edinburgh strand continue with REICHENBACH FALLS, the recent BBC drama about a crime writer who takes his inspiration from Edinburgh. It was based on an idea by Ian Rankin (sounds very familiar, doesn't it?) who should be in attendance according to the programme, and it's quite good indeed.

There's also another chance to see David Allison's excellent live accompanied version of NOSFERATU, which is brought to life with a Scottish flavour.

Sunday, 10 January 2010


The Scottish horror-thriller THE DEAD OUTSIDE, which has had plenty of recognition but little in the way of cinema screenings in its home country, will be hitting DVD on 22nd February 2010 (or the 8th if you just want to rent it). Shop around if you're pre-ordering it, as prices seem to vary a bit. Amazon quotes £11.19, Play is only asking £6.99 (although they do quote a release date of July which I assume is wrong).

The St Kilda Tapes in Glasgow

If you've not yet seen David Allison's excellent combination of live music and multimedia material based on the island of St Kilda, it's on at Celtic Connections this month. See the website for details.

(And if you're here because you're interested in Irish film, I'll mention that Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova of ONCE fame will also be playing at the festival).

Monday, 28 December 2009

Scottish stuff on BBC

ONE NIGHT IN EMERGENCY, mentioned here a few times before, will air at 9pm on Monday the 4th of January, on BBC1 (Scotland only). This one-off drama is written by Gregory Burke (he of "Black Watch" acclaim) and boasts an impressive roster of Scottish acting talent including Kevin McKidd, Gary Lewis, Ewen Bremner, James Cosmo, David Hayman and Jamie Sives. Impressive or what? Other familiar faces include Michelle Ryan and Sanjeev Kohli.

Coincidentally, at 8:30pm on the same night, BBC2 will be showing the Edinburgh-set period drama DEATH DEFYING ACTS.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Joyce films in Edinburgh

The Filmhouse's January programme includes a Joseph Strick retrospective. This season will include screenings of both of his Joyce adaptations, ULYSSES and PORTRAIT OF THE ARTIST AS A YOUNG MAN.

See Filmhouse for details.

SALTMARK viewable online

The BBC Film Network is currently streaming the Scottish short film SALTMARK (which recently screened at the Edinburgh International Film Festival). Click here to view it.

Thursday, 10 December 2009


This new Irish feature is now available to pre-order on DVD. You can order a copy as well as find more information and a trailer at the official website.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Scottish films at the Hippodrome

Looking ahead quite a bit here... the Hippodrome in Bo'ness is showing a collection of material from the Scottish Screen Archive under the umbrella of "Working Life in the Forth Valley" on Wednesday 17th February at 11am. It'll be accompanied by a commentary from historian John Hume.

Before then, on Thursday 4th February at 8pm, Alan Bissett will be reading from his latest novel, filmmaker/musician Alan Stafford will be playing some live music and together (and the reason it gets a mention here) they'll be showing some of the short films they've collaborated on, including the fantastic short THE SHUTDOWN, which I've raved about here before.

Monday, 7 December 2009

New issue of Rough Cuts available

The new issue of Scottish Screen's magazine Rough Cuts is now available. Click here to order your copy or download the PDF version.

It contains coverage of the BAFTA Scotland awards, Scottish views on various film festivals and articles on Scottish and related films such as VALHALLA RISING, CRYING WITH LAUGHTER, WASTED, ONE DAY REMOVALS and a lot more. There's also various Scottish industry related news.

Your thoughts on BBC Alba

The BBC Trust are currently carrying out a review of BBC Alba, the corporation's Scottish Gaelic language channel, with an aim to establishing how well it is achieving its goals and the scope for increasing the potential audience within Scotland.

It's an important source of Gaelic filmmaking in Scotland, so have your say at the BBC trust's website.

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Irish releases update

Friday December 4th sees a number of Irish films hitting either DVD or cinema screens.

The quite brilliant ADAM AND PAUL is being re-released in a special edition featuring various extras that were not available on the previous bare-bones release.

Plenty of special features will also appear on the DVD release of ANTON released the same day.

On the cinema front, SITUATIONS VACANT gets a limited release in Ireland from Friday and the Irish co-production CRACKS opens in the UK on the same day.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Scottish films at Filmhouse

Further to the various other St Andrews related films I've already mentioned (check out Hippodrome and GFT), this Sunday the Filmhouse are offering screenings of I KNOW WHERE I'M GOING, MRS BROWN and THE FLYING SCOTSMAN along with some shorts from the Scottish Screen Archive - and they're free. See the website for details.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Scottish doc shorts on BBC2

Four of the Bridging the Gap films from the Scottish Documentary Institute are showing on BBC Scotland. The first is THE SPORRAN MAKERS tomorrow night and you can find full details of what's screening when by visiting the Docscene website.