Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Support Dean Kavanagh

Last year, I wrote an article about Dean Kavanagh, one of the great and most underappreciated filmmaking talents at work in Ireland today. This is how it began:

Dean Kavanagh is Irish cinema's best-kept secret. Although still in his early twenties, this solitary cinematic poet can already boast of a prolific body of short films, 26 to date, that displays both a personal sensibility and a precision of technique developed far in advance of what most filmmakers have achieved with a lifetime of work behind them. Based in a small town in Co. Wicklow, working alone, without budgets and with casts more often than not drawn from his family, Kavanagh is a melancholy visionary of brooding isolation. His obscure narratives tend to focus either on the private rituals of home life or mysterious journeys to or from ‘home', to or from memory. Memory seems to be the essence of his cinema, or, more specifically, the flimsiness of the divide between the intensity of the impression of a given moment and its memory, with the mechanics of image-making providing the solution in which these two states are dissolved. His is unquestionably a cinema of contemplation: places, objects, faces, atmospheres and their immediate emotional charge are his stock in trade. Rather than telling stories in any traditional sense, his best films generate a slow, throbbing ache that invades and haunts his viewers. His world is rainswept, claustrophobic, fixated on details, with even his urban images steeped in rural gloom. As for the faces, Kavanagh is a cinematic portraitist whose close-ups have a depth, patience and searching power equal to any created by Philippe Garrel in the ‘80s. Like Garrel's, Kavanagh's films are ‘sad and proud of it'.

Dean has launched a Fundit campaign to make a new feature, A Harbour Town. If you care about cinema as art and poetry, please donate generously:



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