Celebrate the Emerald Isles at the 2022 Irish Film Festival Ottawa

ABOVE: The online portion of the festival includes the hilarious comedy Bicycle Thieves: Pumped Up, which takes you on a tour of Dublin.

Since 2014 Ottawa has been home to the annual Irish Film Festival Ottawa, a celebration of Irish film and culture in the nation’s capital.

Last year, in partnership with the Irish Film Institute, the festival was virtual. This year, the Irish Film Festival Ottawa will be hosting online and in-person screenings, with the live events taking place at the Arts Court Theatre.

The five films included in this weekend’s in-person lineup range from comedy to drama and documentary. The dark comedy movie Deadly Cuts is about a working-class Dublin hair salon's fight against gentrification. The documentary film Lost Children of the Carricks is about a group Irish-Quebecois who return to Ireland 168 years after their ancestors left to escape the potato famine. The subject of the documentary is fascinating, given that there are nearly 450,000 Quebecers of Irish descent. Rounding up the live films are Death of a Ladies' Man, a drama/comedy inspired by the music of Leonard Cohen, the documentary Steps of Freedom  about the history of Irish dance, and the horror movie You’re Not My Mother.

Seven films are available for online viewing during the festival, including Steps of Freedom and Death of a Ladies' Man. Online screenings are $5 per film and can be accessed through the Irish Films International platform.

Volunteer organizer Patrick Murray is a lover of Irish Films. When asked what makes Irish films unique and worth seeing, he said, “Ireland has a long tradition of storytellers, which has continued through their cinema. Irish filmmakers excel at telling moving interpersonal stories that enlighten and entertain us—mixing their trademark humour and social insight into their films.”

Murray considers the film festival a passion project of like-minded cinephiles who want to share the experience of Irish culture while also offering something different than a trip to a big box theatre.

In addition to the screening, the festival offers live Q&A sessions after three films: Death of a Ladies Man, You’re Not my Mother, and Lost Children of the Carricks. Murray is excited to offer this added bonus to festivalgoers. “What we really offer the casual cinema-goer that they can’t get at the cinema this weekend are filmmakers and an actress in person at the screenings to answer questions and interact with the audience.”

The festival runs from April 8-14, 2022. Regular admission is $13.75 plus a service fee, student and senior admission is $11.62 plus a service fee.

A pass for all five in-person screenings is $54.06 plus a $4 fee. The IFFO recommends that tickets be purchased from the event website, which you can access by clicking here or by visiting irishfilmfestivalottawa.ca