Sunday, October 13, 2013

Waterford at the Movies

Waterford at the Movies

For this week’s addition of Waterford Castle’s blog we will take a look at the upcoming Waterford Film Festival ; which takes place between the 8th-10th November in Greyfriars Art Gallery. To coincide with the upcoming Waterford Film Festival, we are going to take a look at what is arguably the most significant film to be produced in Waterford;  ‘Barry Lyndon.’  Many of the films exterior scenes were shot in locations throughout Waterford, including Waterford Castle.  As such, through the microcosm of film, this blog should serve as an snap-shot of Waterford's cultural vibrancy.

Now in its 7th year, the Waterford Film Festival provides a platform for film-makers  and writers to showcase a wide range of short films from documentaries, animation, short films, experimental and student work. The Greyfriars  Art Gallery will be transformed into a cinema for the duration of the festival.  The festival centres on and aims to promote independent short films and screenplays. The festival features and exciting programme including a variety of competitions, covering a wide spectrum of areas of writing and cinema. For instance, The Waterford City Council Award for Best Short Film celebrates short fiction and documentary films. Additionally, the Screenplay competition, now in its 6th year, attracts a variety of excellent submissions, primarily from budding, first-time writers. Whilst the Best Screenplay Award will be open to all short film screenplays which have not been filmed/ produced. Due to the variety and quality of the competitions, the festival continually attracts high quality film submissions from filmmakers around the world, thus providing a diverse range of cinema for audiences to enjoy.

Barry Lyndon’, directed by Stanley Kubrick and staring Ryan O Neil and  Marisa Berenson, was released in 1975.  The film is an adaptation of The Luck Of Barry Lyndon, a novel set in the 18 century, written by William Makepeace Thackeray. The story centers on a young farm-boy, Redmond Barry, a loveable rouge who is determined to become a wealthy nobleman and will use any means possible to realise his dream.  Falling on hard times after being robbed, Redmond is forced to join the British Army; fighting in the ‘Seven Years War.’ He latter deserts the British Army to become a spy in the Pursian army, subsecently becoming a conman. He continually lies, dupes and charms his way up the social ladder and enters a loveless marriage to a Countess; Lady Lydon, to further advance his cause. However, his deceptive nature and promiscuous lifestyle catches up with him and he slowly descends into ruin.

Whilst the film features a number of cinematographic innovations, the magnificent settings and classical music allow it to evoke and remain true to its 18th century setting. For instance, a number of locations throughout Waterford, including Waterford Castle’s Island, Little Island, provided the naturally picturesque yet rugged landscape for many of the film’s exterior shots. Furthermore, many of film’s interior scenes where set in a number of as Powerscourt House, Co.Wicklow, Dublin Castle, Cahir Castle and Huntington Castle in County Carlow. In terms of musicality, the film’s score features a number of motifs from works by famous composers such as Bach, Mozart, Schubert, and Vivaldi.  

Additionally, the film’s unique stylistic feature was that most of this film’s interior footage were filmed solely by candle light, which proved to be a cinematic innovation and further emphasized the authenticity, beauty and significance of the scenes. While the film had limited box office success, it won many awards including won four Oscars in production categories and it is often regarded as Kubrick finest work.  Furthermore, it has been regarded as one of the greatest films ever made. Amongst Kubrick’s highly acclaimed directorial portfolio include ‘2001: Space Odecey’,  ‘Sparticus’, ‘the Clockwork Orange' and 'Eyes Wide Shut.'

To conclude, we have seen a snapshot of Waterford's cinematic exploits.Waterford’s history, cultural vibrancy, architecture and un-spoilt natural landscape are just some factors which contribute to Waterford’s   potential as an idyllic film destination. Furthermore, the region has a wealth of talented writers, directors and actors, which is clearly demonstrated each year through the Waterford Film Festival. For more information in relation to the Waterford Film Festival please visit . For more information in relation to Waterford Castle Hotel, please visit

If you are planning to visit Waterford Castle Hotel & Golf Resort or if you have recently stayed with us, why not visit our Tripadvisor page .

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