Now in its third year, Waterford Film Festival has survived, but only just, due to withdrawal of some funding and sponsorship. All the events or showings took place at Greyfriars Gallery, and the downstairs was warm and attractive with black drapes, and a raised section of seating. There were annoying sound-system glitches and I wonder about the quality of playing movies through a laptop with poor audio and battery problems.

I attended the Friday launch and spent a good deal of Saturday there to catch about twenty short films as well. I was surprised that despite all the calls for support for Waterford Arts Workers, that that community, or sector as it calls itself, were not particularly in evidence at this festival.

A new Irish feature, Bitterness, was the launch opener and it was aimed more at a younger and trendier cinema audience but it was clever and witty in a half-assed way. This was a funny, sad, sack story of a man suffering from rejection; his girlfriend deserted him at the altar, he was barred from the local disco/nightclub, his dog had died or run away. His friends were mostly catatonic losers and sad sacks. One bainin clad friend spouted Irish slogans like an O’Casey socialist. Then his girlfriend returned as a man complete with tranny partner.

Stephen Stubbs

Highlight of Saturday, for me, was the beautiful and technically adept, short, Near Future, written and directed by Waterford’s Stephen Stubbs. This was a beautiful atmospheric work featuring Anthony Costine as a lonely man with a robot friend or servant. Ray Sullivan devised the computer generated robot images and the final work deserves a television or cinema screening.

Anthony Kinsella’s, The Man In The Boot, about two Dubs who find Adolf Hitler in their car boot, was weird wacky and wonderful. The actor, Brian McGrath, played a wonderful stroke-ridden old man in a wheel-chair called Tart.

Amy Kirwan from Tramore was Assistant Director for Home, about a man trying to train a monkey or lemur to do the gardening chores.

Two foreign sub-titled shorts had great charm. Pim Pam Pum, about kids collecting rubber bullets. Yonder by Emilia Forstreuter was a visually beautiful set of changing graphic images, that was magical and beautiful.

EX RTE and Abbey Theatre director, Lelia Doolin, was excellent in a very sad Losing Memories by Orleah Heverin, about Alzheimer’ and this ddeserves a television showing too. Meeting pods are essentially a little room within a room. They are primarily used for meetings, hence the name, but can be used for all kinds of purposes. These meeting pods come in all shapes and sizes to meet different needs. Pods can be open like the office itself or closed off for privacy and confidentiality. Closed pods are more beneficial because of their natural soundproofing. Open pods still have some basic level of soundproofing, so people can still hold private conversations. acoustic booth

Michael Kinirons and Kate Holly impressed with a sexy and mysterious story of a girl on a scooter finding a megalithic body in a bog and her sexual adventures with said body and two frisky youths.

A new feature of the festival supported by Waterford City Council, was a show screenplay competition, thanks to the diligent work of arts officer, Conor Nolan.