EIFF22 · Features · Interviews

Heading West Interview: A Chat About a Band Called Shooglenifty

Shooglenifty originated in the 1990s and slowly built a loyal fan base within the Celtic fusion scene. They’ve now released nine albums and have played all over the world. In 2016, their frontman Angus tragically passed away at the age of 49.

Directed by acclaimed filmmaker Don Coutts, the documentary titled Heading West: A Story About a Band Called Shooglenifty charts their highs and lows with heart and humour and has a genuine intimacy that could only be captured by a long-time peer of the group. 

As part of last year’s Edinburgh International Film Festival, fans, friends, and family filed into Edinburgh’s iconic Filmhouse for the film’s world premiere. The atmosphere was electric as everyone waited with bated breath to see the band’s journey on the big screen. The next day, I was fortunate enough to sit down with founding member and guitarist Malcolm Crosbie to chat about the film and his experience in the band…

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Top 20 Films of 2022

With a spate of new comic book movies, indie darlings, and Tom Cruise soaring to box office heights once again, 2022 has been a pretty stellar year for film-goers with something for everyone on the silver screen. In recent months, the taste of cinema has been soured by the closure of several independent picture houses up and down the country, including the Filmhouse in Edinburgh, my beloved local. As we approach awards season with new releases from the likes of Steven Spielberg, Damien Chazelle, and Darren Aronofsky just around the corner, I pick out my favourites from this years’ selection…

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Top 5 Films by Quentin Tarantino…

Love him or loathe him, writer and director Quentin Tarantino has had a huge impact on the landscape of modern cinema. One of the most distinctive auteurs in the industry, his work is almost instantly recognisable through his razor-sharp scripts, excessive use of violence, and of course, extreme close-ups of manky feet. To mark the 30th anniversary of his feature-length directorial debut Reservoir Dogs, I’ve ranked my favourite five from his filmography…

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EIFF22 · Features

Top 5 Must-See Movies of Edinburgh Film Festival 2022

It’s been a long three years since we’ve had a proper film festival in the capital. After an online 2020 iteration and a clever hybrid version last year, EIFF is back in all its glory its 75th edition in 2022, albeit a little later in the calendar. Split into various strands including Heartbreakers, Night Moves, The Chamber, and Postcards from the Edge, the programme offers an eclectic mix of cinema that should have something to satisfy any film-goer. I’ve perused the brochure to pick out a selection that I have my eye on…

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Features · GFF22

Top 5 Must-See Movies of Glasgow Film Festival 2022

As restrictions are easing once again, Glasgow Film Festival is back, this year with a hybrid model which of course includes its online portal as well as physical screenings across the UK! Opening with Graham Moore’s tailor-made thriller The Outfit and closing with Antoneta Alamat Kusijanovic’s tense family drama Murina, the festival boasts an eclectic mix of premieres and retrospectives. I’ve perused the programme to pick out five that I’ve got my eye on…

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Top 20 Films of 2021

In a time in which many thought the medium of cinema was doomed, never to return, there has been a very good crop of films for audiences to enjoy. James Bond finally returned to the big screen after many delays to huge box office success and critical acclaim…from some. As well as that, Denis Villeneuve’s satisfyingly slow-burning Dune franchise took off, and we’ve closed the year out with big nostalgic releases with The Matrix Resurrections and Spider-Man: No Way Home. We’re now fast approaching awards season at the turn of the year, and I pick out my personal crème de la crème of 2021’s releases…

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Top 5 Must-See Movies of Glasgow Film Festival 2021

Last year, Glasgow Film Festival was one of the few in the UK largely unaffected by the pandemic, sneaking in weeks before the first lockdown. However, their 2021 edition will be 100% virtual due to the current restrictions in place. Despite the challenges, the lineup is as exciting and eclectic as ever, boasting 62 films in total from around the world and boasting a Country Focus strand on South Korean cinema. The opening picture will be Lee Isaac Chung’s highly anticipated autobiographical drama Minari and the event will close with Suzanne Lindon’s coming-of-age debut feature Spring Blossom. I have handpicked some films that I won’t want to miss…

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Top 10 Lockdown Recommendations You Might Not Have Seen: 2021 Edition

Another year, another lockdown, and so for those of us that aren’t home-schooling, another chunk of spare time on our hands. If you’ve already binged on The Queen’s Gambit, Bridgerton, and any other telly you’ve been told you must see, you might be on the lookout for some film recommendations. I’ve scoured Netflix, Amazon Prime, BBC iPlayer, and All4 to put together another list. Some quite old, some quite new, all absolutely brilliant.

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Top 20 Films of 2020

It’s been a year like no other as we face a global pandemic and cinemas have been forced to close their doors up and down the country. However, despite the incredible challenges, the standard of film has been remarkably high. With a shortage of big screens and most of the major blockbusters delayed for the foreseeable, we’ve seen more pictures head straight to on-demand, onto streaming services, or in Steve McQueen’s case, right onto terrestrial television in the form of a mini-series. My favourites of the year are as follows:

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Top 10 Netflix Gems You Might Not Have Seen…Volume 3: Coronavirus Special

In this strange and uncertain time of Coronavirus-induced isolation, we search for answers, toilet roll, and new things to watch on Netflix. I am here to help distract you from the sickness fears, hand-picking some of the best hidden gems Netflix (UK version) has to offer. Don’t worry, I washed my hands first.

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