10 February 2004
The Film: The Dreamers
Bernardo Bertolucci could have become a famous poet like his father but instead, he made some short films, dropped out of university and began working with the great director, Pier Paolo Pasolini. In 1970, at the age of 30, he finished his first two major films, 'The Spider's Stratagem' and 'The Conformist'. Two years later he hit the headlines with the controversial 'Last Tango in Paris'. Since then, he has worked regularly and he won the Best Director and Adapted Screenplay Oscars in 1987 for 'The Last Emperor'. His new film, 'The Dreamers', is based on Gilbert Adair's 1988 novel 'The Holy Innocents'. It is set in Paris in the spring of 1968, a time when France's students were rallying the country in an unprecedented national revolt, the air thick with debate about politics, philosophy, cinema and sex.

Eileen Battersby, Peter Murphy and Noel Sheridan discuss 'The Dreamers'

The Film: Blind Flight
'Blind Flight' is directed by first-timer John Furse, it's a dramatisation of the ordeal which began in 1986 when Belfast man Brian Keenan was kidnapped in Lebanon. The movie tells the story of his imprisonment and his friendship with fellow prisoner, John McCarthy, right up until McCarthy's release in 1991, a year after Keenan was freed.

The Panel discusses 'Blind Flight'

The Book: Old School
The writer Tobias Wolff was born in Alabama in 1945. After a troubled youth, he served in Vietnam and later became a police reporter with The Washington Post. He became known for his short stories and won the PEN/Faulkner Award for his 1985 novella 'The Barracks Thief'. His autobiographical memoir, 'This Boy's Life', was published in 1989 and later made into a film starring Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio. 'Old School' is Wolff's seventh book and first novel. It's set in a prestigious American boys school in 1960, narrated by a scholarship boy determined to conceal his not-very-glamorous background. He and his classmates are very bookish, and the pressure begins to mount when they all take part in a writing contest, the prize being a meeting with the great Ernest Hemingway.

The Panel discusses Tobias Wolff's 'Old School'

The Exhibition: Shahin Afrassiabi
The artist Shahin Afrassiabi was born in Iran and now lives and works in Britain. A graduate of Goldsmiths College in London, he was nominated for the Beck's Futures in 2001 and was a participant in the Whitechapel Gallery's 'Early One Morning' group show in 2002. His work has attracted attention both in Britain and internationally, and he has a new installation at the Project in Temple Bar. Afrassiabi works in 3-D spatial compositions, often incorporating everyday objects such as building materials into his work, and his influences include early 20th-Century art such as the work of the Russian Constructivists. For the Dublin show, he was invited to work with a selection of pieces of 'outsider art' drawn from the Musgrave Kinley collection, normally housed at IMMA in Kilmainham.

The Panel discusses Shahin Afrassiabi's show at the Project Arts Centre

The Performance: Benjamin Dwyer, Kenneth Edge & Claudia Atrio
The guitarist and composer Benjamin Dwyer has developed a music performance called 'La Historia del Tango', a journey through the history of Tango music with pieces by several of the form's leading lights including the great man himself, Astor Piazzolla. The music is part of a big Valentine's night celebration at the Model Arts and Niland Gallery in Sligo. And you can also catch the performance at noon on Sunday at the Hugh Lane Gallery in Parnell Square in Dublin. Tonight we are joined by Benjamin Dwyer, saxophonist Kenneth Edge and contralto Claudia Atrio with a song by the great Argentinian bandleader and composer, Anibal Troilo - 'La Ultima Curda'.

Watch the performance

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