Citizen K, The Nightingale and A White White Day to have Irish premieres at Cork Film Festival

Posted October 16, 2019 by Suzanne Murray in News
Citizen K directed by Alex Gibney
Citizen K directed by Alex Gibney

Three Wildcard titles, CITIZEN K, THE NIGHTINGALE and A WHITE WHITE DAY will all have their Irish premiere screenings at this year’s Cork Film Festival which takes place from 7th – 17th November.

Following sold-out screenings at the BFI London Film Festival earlier this month, Academy Award-winner Alex Gibney brings his acclaimed documentary CITIZEN K to Cork. The film is an intimate yet sweeping look at post-Soviet Russia from the perspective of the enigmatic Mikhail Khodorkovsky, a former oligarch turned political dissident.

Benefitting from the chaos that ensued after the dissolution of the U.S.S.R., Khodorkovsky was able to amass a fortune in financing and oil production and became the richest man in Russia. But when he accused the new Putin regime of corruption, he was arrested, his assets were seized and following a series of show trials, he was sentenced to more than ten years in prison. Today, as an exile living in London, he continues to speak out against Putin’s two-decade stranglehold on power.

Expertly researched and photographed, Gibney uses Khodorkovsky’s story as a way to explore the complex interplay between oligarchy and government and its destructive effect on democracy, in Russia and beyond.

Jennifer Kent’s second feature THE NIGHTINGALE is a traumatising yet undeniably powerful meditation on the consequences of violence and the price of seeking vengeance, with stunning performances from Irish actress Aisling Franciosi (Ambition, Jimmy’s Hall, The Fall) and newcomer Baykali Ganambarr.

Set during the colonization of Australia in 1825, the film follows Clare (Franciosi), a 21-year-old Irish convict. Having served her 7-year sentence, she is desperate to be free of her abusive master, Lieutenant Hawkins (Sam Claflin) who refuses to release her from his charge.

Clare’s husband Aidan (Michael Sheasby) retaliates and she becomes the victim of a harrowing crime at the hands of the lieutenant and his cronies. When British authorities fail to deliver justice, Clare decides to pursue Hawkins, who leaves his post suddenly to secure a captaincy up north. Unable to find compatriots for her journey, she is forced to enlist the help of a young Aboriginal tracker Billy (Ganambarr) who grudgingly takes her through the rugged wilderness to track down Hawkins.

Hlynur Palmason’s A WHITE, WHITE DAY is Iceland’s submission for the Best International Feature Film at the 92nd Academy Awards in 2020 and has also been longlisted for the European Film Awards.

In a remote Icelandic town, a former police officer (played by Ingvar Sigurdsson) begins to suspect a local man for having had an affair with his wife, who recently died in a car accident. Gradually his obsession for finding out the truth accumulates and inevitably begins to endanger himself and his loved ones.

Wildcard Distribution will be releasing THE NIGHTINGALE in Irish cinemas on 29th November and will be releasing CITIZEN K in Irish and UK cinemas on 13th December.  A WHITE WHITE DAY is set for an Irish theatrical release early 2020.

Cork Film Festival screenings:

The Nightingale:  Saturday 9th November at 20.45 in The Everyman TheatreMonday 11th November at 15.30 in The Gate Cinema Cork City
Citizen K:  Monday 11th November at 21.00 in The Gate Cinema Cork CityTuesday 12th November at 12.15 in The Gate Cinema Cork City
A White White Day:  Tuesday 12th November at 20.45 in The Gate Cinema Cork CityWednesday 13th November at 15.45 in The Gate Cinema Cork City