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Cillian Murphy Opens Berlin Film Festival with Powerful Drama on Ireland’s Magdalene Laundries

Oscar nominee Cillian Murphy opens Berlin’s <a data-ail="4854569" target="_blank" href="https://www.world-today-news.com/tag/international/" >international</a> film festival with “Small Things Like These”

Oscar nominee Cillian Murphy opens Berlin’s international film festival with “Small Things Like These”

“Small Things Like These”, based on the bestselling novel by Claire Keegan and co-starring Michelle Fairley and Emily Watson, will kickstart the highly-anticipated Berlin’s international film festival. Murphy’s latest outing, directed by Tim Mielants, explores the harrowing story of Ireland’s notorious laundries.

Oscar nominee Cillian Murphy will commence the prestigious Berlin’s international film festival with the much-awaited world premiere of “Small Things Like These”, a gripping drama centered around the infamous laundries in Ireland. These laundries, largely known as prison camps for young women deemed “fallen”, will take center stage in this enthralling movie.

The film, a cinematic adaptation of the widely acclaimed novel by Claire Keegan, presents a powerful narrative with a noteworthy cast. Joining Murphy are Michelle Fairley of “Game of Thrones” fame and Emily Watson, lauded for her brilliant performance in “Chernobyl”.

Distinguished actor and jury president, Lupita Nyong’o, will fulfill the role as the first-ever black jury president in the festival’s 74-year history. Nyong’o expressed her enthusiasm for the event, acknowledging the expected debates and possible protests surrounding issues such as Iran’s women, the Gaza war, and the rise of the far-right.

“Small Things Like These” is one of the twenty fantastic films contending for the Golden Bear, the festival’s top prize. Known as a platform for emotive cinematic experiences and lively discussions, the Berlin’s international film festival holds a significant political dimension that sets it apart from its European counterparts.

A Film Festival Amid Challenging Times

The outgoing festival directors, Mariette Rissenbeek and Carlo Chatrian, have confronted numerous challenges over the past three years, with the long-standing shadow of the coronavirus pandemic being a particularly formidable obstacle.

Film industry expert Scott Roxborough, from The Hollywood Reporter, foresees an invigorating air of excitement surrounding this year’s festival, both on the red carpet and at the sprawling European Film Market, where global movie rights are traded.

Roxborough remarked, “The old spirit should be back again at this Berlinale,” expressing his confidence in the festival’s resurgence.

The Unveiling of “Small Things Like These”

The movie sees Cillian Murphy, who is next month’s Academy Award nominee for his portrayal in the biographical film “Oppenheimer”, reunite with director Tim Mielants. Their previous collaboration occurred in the widely acclaimed series “Peaky Blinders”.

Murphy’s character embodies the role of a devoted father, who stumbles upon dark secrets surrounding a convent in his town. This establishment is entwined with a scandal that shook modern Ireland—the Magdalene laundries. These penitentiary workhouses, operated by the Roman Catholic church from the 1820s until the 1990s, housed and subjected numerous “fallen women” to ostracism, including rape victims, orphans, prostitutes, and the disabled.

Carlo Chatrian expressed confidence in the film, stating, “We are confident that this story that allies the kindness to be directed to the more fragile, and the willpower to stand up against injustice, will resonate with everyone.”

Highlights from the Festival Lineup

Alongside the premiere of “Small Things Like These”, Berlin’s international film festival promises an exciting lineup of diverse and thought-provoking films.

Adam Sandler, renowned for his versatile performances, will present his latest Netflix release “Spaceman”, unraveling the story of an isolated astronaut seeking solace from an alien companion after drifting apart from his wife, portrayed by Carey Mulligan.

“Another End”, featuring Gael Garcia Bernal from Mexico, envisions a technological advancement that allows grieving individuals to reconnect with the departed. This fantastical drama showcases the new-age possibilities of human connection.

Rooney Mara takes the stage in “La Cocina”, an immigration drama that serves as an impactful portrayal of the hidden stories within the restaurant industry, shedding light on the individuals who prepare the world’s food.

Additionally, “Pepe”, an attention-grabbing title, delves into the intriguing world of a hippopotamus from the private menagerie of Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar.

The festival also celebrates the monumental contributions of Martin Scorsese, presenting him with an Honorary Golden Bear for his distinguished achievement. The renowned director, who has been nominated for the prestigious Best Director Academy Award a record-breaking tenth time for his film “Killers of the Flower Moon”, will be in attendance to receive the award.

However, the festival has been marred by controversy, with Iranian filmmakers Maryam Moghaddam and Behtash Sanaeeha being barred from premiering their feminist competition entry, “My Favourite Cake”, due to travel restrictions.

Emphasizing the significance of the festival given the rising influence of far-right politics globally, numerous films will examine Germany’s bitter Nazi history. “Treasure”, featuring Stephen Fry and Lena Dunham, explores the relationship between a Holocaust survivor and his daughter as they return to his Polish hometown and the haunting walls of Auschwitz. Meanwhile, the German drama “From Hilde, With Love”, led by standout actress Liv Lisa Fries, brings to life a true story set in 1942 and the heart of the “Red Orchestra”, a renowned resistance group.


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