Studies on Irish Film

1 Dec

Bord Scannán na hÉireann, in English known as The Irish Film Board has been supporting Irish stories on film for twenty years. It first began between 1980 to 1987 when it produced a few films. After it was closed films such as My Left Foot, The Crying Game, and Commitments were successful, which motivated lobbyists to promote its reopening in 1993. Its goals were to exploit the technical facilities available in Ireland and the imaginative and creative skills, which exist in the industry which have recently been underemployed. Between 1993 to 2004 the Irish Film Board produced over 100 featured films such as Alisa, I went Down, About Adam, Disco Pigs, and Man About Dog, became successful and recognized internationally. Between 2003 and 2004 the company grossed over 2 million euros alone!

The introduction of international production in Ireland between 1994 and 2004 brought a lot of business to Ireland. Film producers chose Ireland to film their movies because of a cheaper tax incentive. Ireland became more competitive for film production than the rest of its international competitors. The government funds the industry of about 20.4 million euros approximately in 2009 to promote the films they produced to increase the popularity of them as well. Workers became more skilled and knowledgeable on the industry, and it also brought a lot of jobs for its citizens. In 1997 Braveheart was filmed in Ireland, which ended up becoming a major international film. Some of the most well known movies were partially filmed in Ireland such as Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, The Princess Bride, and The Italian Job. Although these movies became huge hits at the box office, few people are aware that a lot of its filming took place in Ireland.  

Throughout the world such as in Boston, New York, Toronto, India, Rome, London, Moscow, and Los Angeles, Irish film festivals take place to promote the work of Irish films internationally. Since the creation and revival of the Irish Film Board, film in Ireland has become a significant part of its culture and influential around the world. Its purpose today is to try and spread their influence in the world with continuing their film education and promotion on an international scale. With Irish actors and actresses coming from Ireland like Colin Farrell, Liam Neeson, Cillian Murphy, Saoirse Ronan, and Ruth Bradley, the spread of Irish influence in film has increased within the last decade and continues to become more popular throughout modern Irish culture.

One movie that stuck out to me was Adam and Paul, which was an independent Irish film that was produced in 2004. The movie follows the lives of two heroin addicts from Dublin, Adam and Paul. Adam is the smarter one, with Paul acting as his loyal sidekick. They had been best friends since they were young, and they slowly turned into junkies. The film follows them during a typical day where they had to rob money for more drugs. On that particular day they essentially hit rock bottom and lost all hope and friends. This movie is a cold take on a classic comedy, even though they are two vulnerable, lost souls. It isn’t exactly a loss of hope, but a funny testament to the persistence of one’s spirit even within damaged people. Although this doesn’t entirely represent Dublin, it definitely gives good insight into the things most people don’t necessarily see everyday. The film was extremely creative and captured a very real essence of struggle with addiction.

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