Midnight Court Film Society
Midnight Court Film Society

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Oct-Dec 2010 Screenings

Fri 8 Oct 2010
MicMacs
(Mic Macs - A Tire L'Arigot)


Fri 22 Oct 2010
His and Hers


Fri 5 Nov 2010
Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The
(Män som hatar kvinnor)


Fri 19 Nov 2010
Last Night As I Lay Dreaming
(A tribute to Robbie McMahon of SpancilHill)


Fri 3 Dec 2010
Machan


Fri 17 Dec 2010
The Snowman


His and Hers

2010 - Ken Wardrop - 80 mins - Ireland

Fri 22 Oct 2010 at 8.30 p.m.
Lakeside Hotel, Killaloe

Midnight Court Rating: 4.0 (2 votes)

HisAndHers
Storyline: Rarely have the odd and the ordinary combined to such beguiling effect. Winner of a small hatful of prizes over the last year, Ken Wardrop’s debut feature proudly defies categorisation. Comprising a large number of conversations with ordinary (but remarkable) Irish women, His & Hers certainly satisfies most lucid definitions of a documentary. Listen closely and you will, however, detect a meta-narrative emerging from the cluster of monologues. Each woman describes her own circumstances, but she also unconsciously contributes to the portrait of a composite personality. Wardrop admits that he intended the film as a tribute to his mother, but an engaging class of covert fiction is also under way. At any rate, the film, made for peanuts under the Irish Film Board’s Catalyst Scheme, could comfortably be filed in the drawer marked “avant garde”. A compilation of chatting ladies is, after all, not the sort of thing you expect to encounter in your average Enoromoplex. Well, maybe not. But Wardrop – already acclaimed for a series of touching shorts – has composed such an easily digestible entertainment that it positively demands space in the mainstream. No other film this season has told such a strong story (such strong stories?) with such touching conviction. His & Hers must have been as hard to make as it is easy to summarise: about 70 women, all from the Irish midlands, arranged in ascending order of age, tell stories about the men in their lives. Shot in slightly grainy, attractively washed-out colours by Kate McCullough and Michael Lavelle (winners of an award at the Sundance Film Festival), the participants begin by discussing dads, go on to ponder boyfriends, and then move on to sons and husbands. We begin with a baby; we end with an elderly lady philosophically contemplating decline. As the film progresses, the various unseen men appear to coalesce into a portrait of one decent, slightly useless but hopelessly lovable individual. He makes a nice curry, but he doesn’t do such a good job with the washing-up. When he was a child he had ambitions to move into law enforcement, but his mother never quite bought it. “A guard? A bank robber, more like,” she laughs. For all the joshing, however, the shared affection between man and woman is never in doubt. Among the most moving of many touching moments comes when a young contributor discusses her boyfriend (and all boyfriends). “It’s like they have your heart in their hands and they can do what they like with it,” she says. By this stage, Wardrop has established such a warm ambience that the viewer feels confident the clutched heart will be treasured rather than crushed. Indeed, the few criticisms that have come the way of His & Hers have focused on its apparent cosy view of the chosen milieu. Occasional terrible things happen to the women – the sections on illness and widowhood truly wrench the heartstrings – but this remains a safe environment, largely untouched by violence, stress or marital disharmony. More curiously, the women rarely convey any sense of their lives outside the home. Where are the female doctors, accountants, firefighters and tree surgeons of the midlands? Well, His & Hers does not claim to offer any sort of overview of women’s lives in contemporary Ireland. Wardrop’s most impressive achievement is, in fact, to take so many disparate stories (the firefighters may be here, but they don’t talk about fighting fires) and use them to investigate one particular life: a wife and mother in the mould of Mrs Wardrop. His & Hers is, aside from being a very touching film, an enormously impressive formal achievement. Women’s homes may (for all I know) look quite similar in the midlands, but it takes skill to make every kitchen seem like it abuts the same well-tended, tidily painted corridor. The result is a near-perfect act of cinematic sleight of hand: a beautiful tale told apparently by accident. No wonder His & Hers is the most lauded Irish film since Hunger. – Donald Clarke, The Irish Times Winner – Best Irish Feature, Galway Film Fleadh 2009 Winner – World Cinema Cinematography Award, Sundance Film Festival 2010 Winner – Audience Award, Jameson Dublin International Film Festival 2010 Winner – Critics Choice Award, Jameson Dublin International Film Festival 2010 Winner – Feature Documentary, Irish Film and Television Awards 2010

Genre: Documentary

Cast: 70 women from the midlands of Ireland

Verdicts from the Midnight Court

Previous Screenings

Fri 10 Jun 2005
Hero


Fri 3 Jun 2005
Metallica: Some Kind of Monster


Fri 27 May 2005
Since Otar Left


Fri 20 May 2005
Old Boy


Fri 13 May 2005
The Motorcycle Diaries


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The Return


Fri 29 Apr 2005
Valentin


Fri 22 Apr 2005
Uzak
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American Splendor


Sat 9 Apr 2005
Ae Fond Kiss


Sat 12 Mar 2005
EXTRA The Story of the Weeping Camel


Fri 11 Mar 2005
The Story of the Weeping Camel


Fri 25 Feb 2005
Fahrenheit 9/11


Fri 11 Feb 2005
Bad Education


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The Station Agent


Thu 13 Jan 2005
Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter, Spring


Fri 10 Dec 2004
Lost In Translation


Fri 3 Dec 2004
Wilbur
(Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself)


Fri 26 Nov 2004
Respiro


Fri 19 Nov 2004
Raising Victor Vargas


Fri 12 Nov 2004
Far From Heaven


Fri 5 Nov 2004
Together With You


Fri 29 Oct 2004
Capturing The Friedmans


Fri 22 Oct 2004
Goodbye Lenin


Fri 15 Oct 2004
Mother, The


Fri 8 Oct 2004
Spellbound


Fri 1 Oct 2004
Death In Venice
(Morte a Venezia)


Fri 24 Sep 2004
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(Les Invasions Barbares)


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Amandla ! A revolution in 4 part harmony


Fri 12 Dec 2003
City Of God (2)


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8 Women


Fri 14 Nov 2003
Nine Queens


Sat 1 Nov 2003
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Divine Intervention


Fri 3 Oct 2003
Talk To Her


Fri 19 Sep 2003
Italian For Beginners


Fri 4 Apr 2003
No Mans Land


Fri 21 Mar 2003
Sex and Lucia
(Lucia Y El Sexo)


Fri 7 Mar 2003
Divided We Fall


Fri 7 Feb 2003
The Closet
(Le Placard)


Fri 24 Jan 2003
Salaam Bombay


Fri 10 Jan 2003
Y Tu Mama Tambien
(And Your Mother Too)


Fri 13 Dec 2002
Lagaan, Once Upon A Time In India


Fri 29 Nov 2002
George Washington


Fri 15 Nov 2002
The Taste of Others
(Le Goût Des Autres)


Fri 1 Nov 2002
The Devil's Backbone
(El Espinazo del Diablo)


Fri 18 Oct 2002
The Princess and The Warrior


Fri 4 Oct 2002
Aimée et Jaguar


Fri 20 Sep 2002
Kolya


Fri 6 Sep 2002
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Wed 29 May 2002
Puckoon


Fri 22 Mar 2002
Amelie


Fri 8 Mar 2002
Tears of the Black Tiger


Fri 22 Feb 2002
Matador


Fri 25 Jan 2002
The Dish


Fri 18 Jan 2002
Together


Thu 16 Dec 1999
Antonia’s Line


Thu 9 Dec 1999
Feng Yue
(Temptress Moon)


Thu 25 Nov 1999
Life is Beautiful


Thu 11 Nov 1999
The Sweet Hereafter


Thu 28 Oct 1999
Short Cuts


Thu 14 Oct 1999
Delicatessen