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Joss Whedon at the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival 2013

This event was part of the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival 2013. It was hosted after a screening of Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing.

It has been a pretty great year for great guests at the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival. Robert Towne gave an interview and a workshop of screenwriting. Danny DeVito popped along to the Jameson Cult Film Club screening of L.A. Confidential. And Joss Whedon came to Dublin, with tickets to Much Ado About Nothing selling out so fast that they almost crashed the JDIFF servers. Whedon hung around afterwards for a rapid-fire questions-and-answers session, talking a bit about the film and his future plans, as well as his frequent artistic collaborators.

Image from JDIFF twitter feed.

Image from JDIFF twitter feed.

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Dario Marianelli at the National Concert Hall (Jameson Dublin International Film Festival)

This event was part of the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival 2013.

I’ve argued it before, but one of the best parts of the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival is the way that it isn’t just confined to the cinemas. The feast of fine Irish and international cinema is something that any film fan can celebrate, but the capital city itself becomes a hotbed for the celebration of film as an artform. So there’s all manner of wonderful extras going on – from classes in film criticism to workshops with Robert Towne, to the Jameson Cult Film Club screening of L.A. Confidential. The National Concert Hall typical does a nice job of getting into the mood, hosting celebrations of the sound of cinema. In the past, for example, they hosted the newly-written live musical accompanyment to The Four Horseman and a tribute to Danny Elfman.

This year, they invited composer Dario Marianelli over to showcase and introduce several selections of music from his distinguished career. It’s always a fantastic time to recognise and to celebrate Marianelli’s work, but to host the composer in Dublin less than a week before the Oscars is a very rare pleasure indeed.

dariomarianelli

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Non-Review Review: The Two Jakes

I’m going to be completely honest here, and possibly ruin my reputation as a film boffin. Until I held the DVD of The Two Jakes in my hands about ten years ago, I didn’t even know there was a sequel to Chinatown. The belated sequel languished in development hell after real life intervened – there was no way that Polanski could direct a sequel to perhaps his most famous film (at least not in Los Angeles, where it was set) and the movie that followed became caught in a tug of war between actor Jack Nicholson and writer Robert Towne, both of whom wanted a shot at directing. Nicholson won, but one can’t help but get the feeling in watching the film that the movie might have been better served with a stronger and more impartial director.

Will the bad guy get his just deserts this time around?

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Non-Review Review: Chinatown

“You may think you know what’s you’re dealing with,” a character warns private detective Jack Gittes at one point during Chinatown“but, believe me, you don’t.” Later on, Gittes confesses to his lover that, when he was a police officer working in Chinatown, his beat consisted of doing “as little as possible”, an anecdote that screenwriter Robert Towne reportedly heard from an officer who had actually served in Chinatown – rather than an officer involving himself in some sort of event that he couldn’t possibly comprehend, the police would actively disengage themselves from the community. That’s the core of the corruption at the heart of Polanski’s film – how little anyone actually knows about what is really happening, and how it’s easy to ignore these things rather than attempting to deal with them.

A nosey detective...

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