Below is a quick recap of the Closing Gala including a mini-review of The Silence of Lorna, a Cannes Film Festival award winner…
‘The Silence of Lorna’, directed by the Dardenne brothers (Jean-Pierre and Luc) was the film selected for this year’s Closing Gala. I’m surprised that such a bleak movie was chosen to end the festival; although a tale of redemption in some ways, it doesn’t offer much hope and leaves you feeling a bit pessimistic. Lorna, the main protagonist, is a young Albanian woman who earns herself Belgian citizenship by marrying Claudy, a junkie trying his best to clean up his act. The marriage is a sham, naturally, and Lorna plans to move on to a second husband as soon as possible so that he too can gain citizenship. The money she will earn for such deeds should provide capital for her and her true lover to set up a snack shop in the city. It’s a messy situation and it’s not long before Lorna is out of her depth, the only female in a male dominated set up. ‘The Silence of Lorna’ was nominated for the Golden Palm at Cannes and also won a Screenwriting award there. The plot is fairly straightforward, almost too straightforward at times: First this happens, then that happens; I was left with the impression the writers did not exactly enjoy writing this story! Of course, this only adds to the realism which the Dardenne bros wanted to achieve; there’s no Hollywood endings here.
Before the main event, the various short film awards were handed out: Best Irish Short went to Cecilia McAllister for ‘Féileachán’/’Driving Lesson’ and the Best Made in Cork went to Ed Godsell for ‘Matty Kiely’s Last Day’, a spur of the moment documentary about the closure of the popular fish n’ chip shop on Maylor Street. You can watch the winning short here on the purecork blip tv site, along with a few other shorts about various old-fashioned sweet shops around the county. Ed Godsell also won the Audience Award at the Cork Film Festival a few years ago for his comical short, ‘Mullet’, in which he questioned the people of Cork about the mullet fish that reside in the River Lee during the summer. A full list of the winners can be found here on the official festival site.
The closing gala heralded the end of yet another film festival..but was it a good festival? I’m milking this polldaddy device and offering ye yet another chance to vote! And as for the last poll, well the screenings which most people wanted to see at the Cork Film Fest were the Cork shorts 🙂