Archive for May 2nd, 2008

May 02 2008

How To Make Friends And Influence People In 45 Days

Published by under Blog,Night Out

Much as it pains me to do it, I have to give kudos to my good friend Darragh Doyle. He has been working in his current position for only a short while and he has clearly made an incredibly positive impression on those he worked with.

After seeing Iron Man last night, we joined Doyle in The Church for his leaving drinks. His workmates were saying goodbye to both Darragh and another colleague of his and it’s clear from speaking with them (some of whom I’ve met before) that they will all miss him.

So, congratulations, Mr. Doyle, on your new position and I hope you keep in touch with these people who clearly hold you in high esteem (even if they did try to poison you…)

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May 02 2008

Iron Man

Published by under Blog,Movie Review,Movies

As the Cinemagic Festival draws to a close, the organisers reflect on six months work, sponsorship deals, input from children, the organisation of each event and the patting on the backs of those who deserve to be patted on the back.

And in screen 17 of Cineworld Cinema on Parnell Street at 7.20, as all of this celebratory oration ensued, I patiently bit my nails waiting for the closing movie, Iron Man to begin. Credit where it’s due. This past week has seen workshops, classes and events designed immerse young people in the world of film and screen and to nurture talents of other young up-and-coming filmmakers of the future.


The silver screen outing of the iconic Iron Man is the perfect mix of comedy, drama and superhero campness and mayhem. Robert Downey Jnr’s Tony Stark is a solid role. It is not a simple lock-and-load action hero. It requires some gritty acting to pull off a character that sees a story arc begin with a millionaire playboy lifestyle, move into tortured kidnap victim, emerge into a born again humanitarian only to be driven by a sense of guilt and revenge to become a potential hero to the world. Downey is perfect in this role. Drawing upon his own life, he plays a man who possesses incredible talent but is wasting it on a lifestyle of alcohol and loose women.

Seen again in the upcoming Edward Norton take on the role of Bruce Banner/Hulk, Marvel seem to have realised that high octane action and massive explosions cannot cut it anymore. Perhaps being burned by Bana’s Hulk, they now see that quality acting and intelligent writing is required to bring the often decades of comic book complexities to the big screen.

Iron Man surpasses expectations. The excellent script did not miss a beat and the direction made sure that each character (including the excellent support act of Terrence Howard in the role of Stark’s friend, Jim Rhodes) were explored beyond a 2D stereotype. On top of acting and script prowess, this movie does not fail to deliver on heavy duty action and huge landscapes. As we travel from the deserts of Afghanistan to the cities of California to the beautiful home of Tony Stark, we are greeted by destruction and mayhem at very turn. Even the lighthearted comic elements of the movie are infused with action (the scenes in which Stark tests his burgeoning technology are fantastic).

This film is also a perfect example of good use of CG. Needless to say the big flying machine and the robot battle scenes are epic in their use of computer generated imagery, but it is the more sybtle use of CG (notably when Gwyneth Paltow’s Pepper Potts must reach her hand into Tony Starks chest cavity) that prove that Hollywood is finally learning to utilise the available technologies rather than simply pump a load of CG action in and hope for profits (see the aforementioned Hulk or the last of the Matrix movies, Revolutions).

The first blockbuster of 2008, Iron Man sufficiently whets the appetite in preparation for Indiana Jones return, the tentative big screen version of Speed Racer, Shyamalan’s The Happening, the updated Incredible Hulk, and of course the huge Dark Knight. I can’t wait!

Once again, a huge thank you to Darragh and to all those involved in the Cinemagic Festival. Congratulations on a very successful week and I look forward to next year’s events.

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