Cinema Roundup August 1st

freaksThroughout August, the Irish Film Institute is holding a month-long season of “Cursed” films; movies that for one reason or another were overlooked at the time of their release.

Kicking off the season is 1932’s Freaks, which screens on Sunday at 4pm. Director Tod Browning’s movie is set in the world of a travelling “Freak” show. Not helped by it’s troublesome subject matter, “Freaks” was a flop on its initial release and was immediately banned in many countries. It’s far from the cheap exploitation movie its title and subject matter might suggest, rather a sympathetic look at those maligned on the outskirts of society.

On Monday at 6.15pm, Orson Welles’ 1942 flop The Magnificent Ambersons screens. Now considered one of his greatest works, the film’s treatment at the hands of the RKO studio bigwigs spelled the beginning of the end of Welles’ time as a Hollywood director. He would spend the rest of his career struggling to get movies made on his own terms.

Something completely different at The Lighthouse on Saturday night is a Sing-a-long screening of Grease at 10.30pm. Bring your leather jacket and your comb!

The highlight of this week’s new releases is Hide Your Smiling Faces, a low budget drama looking at the effects of a young boy’s death on his friends in a rural American town. It’s an atmospheric and brooding tale that won’t be to everyone’s tastes, but I found it a rewarding experience.

The latest comic book adaptation is Guardians of the Galaxy, a sci-fi tale laced with tedious attempts at smartass comedy that fails to entertain.

By Eric Hillis

Image: Movie of the Week: Freaks