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Silence (2012)

Eoghan is a sound recordist who is returning to Ireland for the first time in 15 years. His reason for returning is a job offer: to find and record places free from man-made sound. His ... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Andrew Bennett ...
Barman
Marie Coyne ...
Herself
Tommy Fahy ...
Himself
Michael Harding ...
Local Man Ballycroy
Jens K. Müller ...
Himself
Pater Lacey ...
Himself
Eoghan Mac Giolla Bhride ...
Eoghan Mac Suibhne
Patrick O'Connor ...
Local Man the Buren
Hilary O'Shaughnessy ...
Girlfriend
Tim Robinson ...
Himself
Paul Rogers ...
Himself
Jordan Shields ...
Himself
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Storyline

Eoghan is a sound recordist who is returning to Ireland for the first time in 15 years. His reason for returning is a job offer: to find and record places free from man-made sound. His quest takes him away from towns and villages into remote terrain. Throughout his journey, he is drawn into a series of encounters and conversations which gradually divert his attention towards a more intangible silence, one that is bound up with the sounds of the life he had left behind. Influenced by elements of folklore and archive, Silence unfolds with a quiet intensity, where poetic images reveal an absorbing meditation on themes relating to sound and silence, history, memory and exile. Written by Anonymous

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Drama

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27 July 2012 (Ireland)  »

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User Reviews

 
An extraordinary piece of film-making
24 April 2017 | by (Derry, Ireland) – See all my reviews

The very best Irish cinema is so steeped in the DNA of the country that it couldn't possibly come from anywhere else and I'm not talking solely about the landscape or what one perceives as 'national character, though both, obviously, play their part but a feeling of 'otherness' that is as natural as the weather. I am thinking now of the films of the great Bob Quinn and Thaddeus O'Sullivan, films that may not have been 'successful' but which were inescapably Irish, part fact and part fiction; not quite documentary in that they had actors and had 'fictional' narratives but which were quite unlike the fiction films of other national cinemas.

As Irish cinema grew more confident, feature films like "Eat the Peach", "I Went Down" and Lenny Abrahamson's "Garage" embraced their heritage with just the right amount of boldness and affection. Abrahamson, of course, has gone on to pastures new, to international cinema and success at the Oscars. I'm not yet going to say he's sold out; talent like his is too big to cage and we may yet see him return to his roots.

Last year Christine Molloy and Joe Lawlor gave us "Further Beyond", an Irish film quite unlike any that had gone before; one that dealt, not just with Irish history, but with the film-making process itself and the nature of 'acting'. "Silence", which Pat Collins directed in 2012 and co-wrote with his leading 'actor' Eoghan Mac Giolla Bhride, harks back to the cinema of Bob Quinn. It's part fiction, part fact; the people on screen are 'playing' versions of themselves, the subject that Irish DNA I spoke of, the landscape, the people and their thoughts and above all the 'silence' that is so a part of that great swathe of Irish countryside.

It's about a sound recordist, (Mac Giolla Bhride), who returns to Ireland to record the absence of man-made sound, the silence that is peculiar to Ireland. On the one hand, then, it deals with the film-making process, the use of sound in film, but it also deals with what could be described as that well of loneliness we often, wrongly, associate with silence. In seeking silence Eoghan, who has been away from Ireland for 15 years, seems to be seeking the solitude, and in the solitude, the happiness the Irish diaspora has denied him.

For a film called "Silence" sounds are everywhere but they are the sounds of nature we very often don't hear; the sounds of silence, if you like. Beautifully shot for the most part in widescreen and in colour, with 'inserts' in black and white, this is an exquisite piece of film-making that draws us deep into its subject. Of course, being Irish myself, and living not a stone's throw from where some of this film was shot, perhaps I am seeing things here that others won't; perhaps I have the privilege of being a part of that DNA. Regardless, this is a film that really shouldn't be missed, as open and as honest as they come.


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