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May 2014

The third ‘Reel Lives Film Festival’, organised by The Irish Centre for Social Gerontology (www.icsg.ie) at NUI Galway, is offering free lunchtime screenings of international films and documentaries celebrating ageing across the life-course from 19th-23rd May as part of the Bealtaine Festival. 

All films to be screened in lecture theatre IT125, IT Building on the NUI Galway campus at 1 pm (Tuesday 2 pm), and are open to the public.  Film themes include retirement, adventure in later years, attachment to home-place, technology, carers, and reminiscence.  A short, informal audience discussion follows each film.

In addition to free films, audience members can enjoy complimentary soft drinks and sweets, and win an audience spot prize.  Additional attractions include a pre-screening reading of a short story about ageing by Galway writer, Moya Roddy, on Monday 19th at 1 pm.  Galway tour-guide, Brendan Hynes will take audience members for a Corrib riverside walk and talk on Friday 23rd, post-screening.

Preceding Tuesday’s films is the launch of the Galway Age Friendly Alliance Strategy.  The Galway Age Friendly City and County Alliance is a partnership of key local groups that is committed to making the City and County better places in which to grow older.  The new Strategy will be launched at 1230 pm on Tuesday 20th May by sports commentator and raconteur Micheál O’Muircheartaigh in IT125.  All welcome, refreshments provided.


Monday: short ‘Analogue People in a Digital Age’ by Keith Walsh [13 mins].  An Irish bar discussion on coping with technology.  Main film: ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ (2011), starring Judi Dench, Maggie Smith [124 mins].  The exotic lives of India’s hotel for the well-heeled British retirees are portrayed in rich performances by an all-star cast.  Lovely screen music too.

Tuesday: short ‘4 Bhanrion’ (2013, as Gaeilge with sub-titles) by Vittoria Colinna, starring Geraldine Plunkett [15 mins].  A deadly game of poker dictates which sister will mind mammy in her dotage.  Main film: ‘Song for Marion’ (2012), starring Terence Stamp, Vanessa Redgrave [93 mins].  Singing in her community choir, whilst dying of cancer is a life-changing experience for all, especially for Marion’s husband Terence Stamp.  Great acting, singing and fun amidst a serious topic.

Wednesday: short ‘Blue Rinse’ by Matt Leigh [11 mins].  Life inside a Dublin hairdressing salon for older women.  Main film: ‘The Trip to Bountiful’ (1985), starring Geraldine Page, Rebecca de Mornay [107 mins].  Based on Oscar-nominated screenplay, Geraldine Page won an Academy award for best actress for her performance.  A longing to see her home-place before she died leads Page to recount the story of her life in this poignant tale.  This is the original film (re-make 2014).

Thursday: short ‘Forty Foot’ by Paul McGrath & Leticia Agudo [9 mins].  Stories from the swimmers who use Dublin’s famous 40-foot sea spot.  Main film: ‘Harry and Tonto’ (1974), starring Art Carney, Ellen Burstyn, Larry Hagman [111 mins].  Evicted from his home, Art Carney embarks on a road trip across America with his cat ‘Tonto’.  Snappy dialogue, and an upbeat message on leading an active life in later years.  Good performances all round, even from Tonto.

Friday: short: ‘Foxes and Donkeys’ (2013) by Eileen Gibbons [13 mins].  Stories by residents of St Brendan’s Nursing Home, Loughrea.  Main film: ‘My Afternoons with Margueritte’ (2010, French with English sub-titles), starring Gerard Dépardieu [82 mins].  The highly watchable Dépardieu’s performance as an illiterate and lonely man befriending an older and well-read woman makes this a gentle gem.  You won’t even notice it’s not in English. 

Parking is available on campus to non-NUI Galway personnel within pay and display areas.  The screening venue has all facilities available to hand; including cafés, restrooms, and a lift is available to the lecture theatre for easy access.  The lecture theatre is wheelchair friendly.

Films are courtesy of Screenclick; Bord Scannán na hEireann/The Irish Film Board; film collector Liam Bluett, and Directors. 


Reel Lives Film Festival poster designed by artist Marina Wild, NUIG. 


Soft drinks and confectionary are courtesy of the Students’ Union Shop NUIG.  Spot prizes are sponsored by NUIG’s Kingfisher Sports Centre, and Masterchefs Hospitality NUIG.

Further information contact event organiser, Alison Herbert, 091-495461 / 087-2830757, www.icsg.ie.