20 November 2007
The Guests

Crime novelist Declan Hughes; columnist Róisín Ingle and writer Peter Murphy.

The Film: The Darjeeling Limited

Directed by Wes Anderson, 'The Darjeeling Limited' brings together Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman as three brothers who have not spoken to each other in years and sends them off on a road trip across India in search of their mother - now a nun in a Himalayan convent. That's about it in a nutshell. Wes Anderson is of course well known for movies such as 'The Royal Tenenbaums' and 'The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou'. So you won't be surprised to learn that this is a rather odd road trip. It's a spiritual quest, certainly, but one fuelled largely by ego, insecurity and far too much medication.

The Book: The New Granta Book of the American Short Story

Richard Ford, best known for novels such as 'The Sportswriter', 'Independence Day' and 'The Lay of the Land', is seen by many as America's greatest living writer. Back in 1992 he edited 'The Granta Book of the American Short Story' and now, all these years later, he has done it again with 'The New Granta Book of the American Short Story'. The collection features big guns like John Cheever, Eudora Welty and Raymond Carver, plus stories by a new generation of writers. Once again, Ford has managed not to include himself. He has however written an extensive introduction which tells us, among other things, why the accepted rules of short story writing do not necessarily apply to the ones he has chosen. 'The New Granta Book of the American Short Story' is published by Granta at €30.

The Opera: Dead Man Walking

The sight of a nun at the Gaiety Theatre on a Sunday night is probably not all that extraordinary. But this was no was ordinary nun. From Louisiana, Sr Helen Prejean is famous the world over, ever since her story was made into a movie starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn. The movie was 'Dead Man Walking' and that same story of her relationship with a man on death row is now an opera written by Jake Heggie. And so the reason for Sr Helen being at the Gaiety: Opera Ireland's production of 'Dead Man Walking', starring Charlotte Hellekant.

The Film: Shrooms

Directed by Paddy Breathnach and written by Pearse Elliot, the people who brought you 'Man About Dog', 'Shrooms' is a full-on slasher horror set in the Irish countryside. A group of particularly irritating American teenagers come to Ireland, lured by the promise of a good time on the local 'shrooms - or magic mushrooms. The problem is that they grow in a very spooky forest inhabited mainly by long dead Christian brothers with sharp implements. And as if that wasn't bad enough, one of the teenagers, the blonde one, eats the wrong mushroom - the one said by the druids to give you the power to foresee death. Before long, things start to go horribly wrong.

The Performance: Cathy Davey

Cathy Davey has now followed up her 2004 debut with a new CD called 'Tales of Silversleeve'. She'll be on the road on the back of that album and dates include Dublin's Button Factory on 12 December. Tonight she's with us in studio with the song 'No Heart Today'.

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