May Cinema at An Lanntair

  • Published on: 3rd May 2016
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Programme Assistant Oriana takes us through this month’s cinema programme! From tiny islands in fascinating familial drama ‘Iona’ to huge battles in Marvel’s latest ‘Captain America’ we have something for everyone!


Iona’s title is the name of both the film’s heroine and the Hebridean island on which it is set. This striking, reflective drama scrutinizes the conflicts and struggles that take place within both the island’s community and the life of a woman who returns there after a long absence. Iona (played by the remarkable Ruth Negga) is accompanied by her teenage son and the pair are seemingly fleeing the city for which she left her childhood home as a teenager. Exactly what has taken place there, though, director Scott Graham takes his time teasing out against the stunning background of Iona’s landscapes.

Also following an eponymous heroine with a mysterious past, Sebastian Schippen’s heist drama Victoria races through the streets of Berlin in real time and one continuous take. In its five-star review, the Observer describes Victoria as ‘an authentic piece of cinematic magic’, in which a young Spanish woman’s explorations of Berlin lead her on an adrenaline-charged journey into the city’s criminal underworld.

Another outsider finds himself displaced in a foreign country in Jacques Audiard’s (director of A Prophet and Rust and Bone) latest film Dheepan, in which a Liberation Tiger warrior in the Sri Lankan civil war, finds himself living and working in a French housing scheme. Forced into a refugee camp after a brutal defeat, the former soldier teams with a strange woman and child in order to use the passports of a dead family which are being sold by human traffickers. The makeshift family seek asylum in France, where they find themselves at the centre of yet more conflict between local gangs and drug dealers. Giving it five stars, the Financial Times describes the tense but rewarding experience of watching Dheepan: “for ninety minutes it’s like a firecracker waiting to explode. Then comes the explosions”.

Another family find themselves on the run in Midnight Special, which opens in a cheap motel room with the windows boarded and the peephole taped over. Within it, two nervous-looking men played by Michael Shannon and Joel Edgerton are hiding from the FBI, NSA… and members of a sinister cult. The reason for their pursuit joins them in their shabby motel room: eight-year-old Alton who- it soon becomes apparent- is no ordinary child. Likened by Empire in their four-star review to John Carpenter’s Starman and Spielberg’s Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, Midnight Special is ‘Soulful Sci-fi. A tribute to ‘80s classics but with a 21st-century twist’.