TODAY IS Canada Day/Fête du Canada, the Great White North’s national holiday, and this month’s Galway Film Fleadh is showing a range of films from the North American nation.
The best in new Canadian cinema, including documentaries, feature films, and shorts, as well as audience Q&As with Canadian filmmakers, will take place at the fleadh, which runs from Tuesday July 8 to Sunday 13.
The Canada-Irish connection
Canada has always acknowledged its links with Ireland. The Irish coat of arms of the gold harp on a blue shield forms part of the Canadian coat of arms; The Irish Regiment of Canada is one of the Canadian army’s main infantry regiments; while many descendants of Irish immigrants in Newfoundland still retain Irish accents.
Another connection is in film. Canada is Ireland’s largest co-production partner after Britain, a result of the co-production treaty signed by the Irish and Canadian governments in 1989. Irish/Canadian related films at the fleadh include Stay, a romantic drama starring Aidan Quinn and Taylor Schilling (Orange Is The New Black), which was shot in Canada and Connemara. It will be screened on Friday 11 at 2.30pm in the IMC Cinema.
Another Canada/Ireland connection comes with The Grand Seduction, Brendan Gleeson as a mischievous, unemployed, fisherman in a sleepy village in Newfoundland. It will be shown on Friday 11 at 6.30pm in the IMC Cinema.
Also worth watching out for is the romantic-drama Fearless, starring Fionnuala Flanagan and directed by Ted Kotcheff, who made Rambo: First Blood.
Canadian documentaries & shorts
Canada has a long tradition of documentary filmmaking and Our Man in Tehran (Thursday 10, 6pm, IMC), looks at the Canadian Ken Taylor who led the rescue operation for the six US citizens held hostage during the Iranian Revolution.
In a more lighthearted vein is Lunarcy! (Friday 11, 8pm, Cinemobile), a humorous portrait of visionaries and eccentrics united by their obsession with the moon.
Meet the film-makers
A delegation of Canadian filmmakers who will participate in Q&As with the audience after screenings. A Q&A will follow The Auction (Thursday 10, 4.15pm, IMC 6), a bittersweet study of personal sacrifice in economically depressed rural Quebec.
There will also be a Q&A for Rhymes for Young Ghouls, an audacious genre-bending drama, which will also be screened on Thursday 10 at 4.15pm in the IMC.
For further information on the full range of films screening as part of the fleadh’s focus on Canada or to book tickets, log on to www.galwayfilmfleadh.com