August 24th 2022: The Irish Film Institute (IFI) is delighted to announce the programme for the IFI Documentary Festival 2022. This year, the festival will take place both at the IFI in Temple Bar and online, nationwide on IFI@Home, September 21st – 25th. Tickets for cinema screenings are now available from, with online rentals available to pre-order from

Intimate portraits, stories of remarkable human connections, kindness and empathy, a rare look behind the music and tales that are truly stranger than fiction await.

On announcing the programme, IFI Director Ross Keane said ‘The IFI Documentary Festival is always a firm favourite amongst our audiences and is a in the cultural calendar each Autumn. This year’s programme features an eclectic mix of fascinating stories from Ireland and around the globe, shining a spotlight on stories, both personal and societal, that are sure to engage, enlighten and entertain a broad range of audiences.’

This will be the first IFI Documentary Festival in three years to welcome audiences back into the Eustace Street cinemas at full capacity, but the decision was made to maintain an online element to the festival in response to the large numbers from outside Dublin who are engaging with IFI@Home. The festival is programmed IFI Irish Film Programming team Sunniva O’Flynn (Irish features) and Dean Kavanagh (Irish shorts) and IFI Head of Programming David O’Mahony (international titles); this year discover:

  • All These Sons follows two community programmes trying to break the cycles that produce violence among young men in Chicago.
  • An honest and intimate look into the life of David who returns home to care for his dying uncle in Much Ado About Dying.
  • Follow the story of three children and a team of dedicated social workers at a safe haven for at-risk children temporarily removed from their parents, in Eastern Ukraine, in A House Made of Splinters.
  • Girl, Taken, a gripping story of how, 17 years after a baby went missing in Cape Town, she befriends her younger sister.
  • While making a documentary about the CIA/MI6 coup in Iran in 1953, never-seen-before archive material is unearthed and brought to life by Ralph Fiennes, in Coup 53.
  • The journey of the Middle-East’s first all-female thrash metal group, Sirens, as they wrestle with friendship, sexuality, and the destruction of their city.
  • A much anticipated public interview with multi Oscar winning editor Walter Murch (Apocalypse Now, The English Patient, The Godfather Part II)
  • The annual Irish Shorts Programme presenting new and exciting aspects of the documentary form
  • Million Dollar Pigeons, take flight into the world of pigeon fanciers where tensions simmer between old-time purists and the new breed whose eyes are fixed firmly on the big prize.
  • Atomic Hope – Inside the Pro-Nuclear Movement, following a tiny global movement of unpopular pro-nuclear activists, who advocate for nuclear power to avoid calamitous climate change.
  • Nothing Compares, an archive-led documentary and interview with Sinéad O’Connor.
  • Two brothers in New Delhi care for thousands of birds that drop daily from the city’s skies in a makeshift hospital in their home in All That Breathes.
  • An artist fights to realise his dream and build Wall of Death in The Artist & The Wall of Death.
  • An intriguing portrait of Prog Rock icons King Crimson and Robert Fripp filmed over three years In the Court of the Crimson King: King Crimson at 50.
  • An investigation into The Peculiar Sensation of Being Pat Ingoldsby.
  • Return of the Irish Shorts Programme, showcasing innovation and excellence.

Stills can be downloaded here.

The programme in more detail:

The IFI Documentary Festival will open on Wed 21 September with the Irish premiere of ALL THESE SONS, directed by Joshua Altman, Bing Liu.

  • Chicago’s exceptionally high level of gun violence has made national headlines for decades. While the city responds with aggressive policing, two community members from the disadvantaged South and West Sides lead programmes that attempt to break the cycles that produce violence in the first place, by investing in the young men most at risk of being victims or perpetrators. ALL THESE SONS, which is co-directed by Bing Liu, whose first feature, Minding the Gap, opened IFI Documentary Festival in 2018, follows three young men as they struggle with their pasts, and, with the guidance of their mentors, hope to construct a better future for the next generation.

At the IFI: 21 Sept at 18.20 / 88 mins, USA, 2021

Followed by a wine reception in the IFI Foyer.

  • Filmmaker Simon Chambers comes to London to look after his dying uncle David, an eccentric, cantankerous, ‘luvvie’ obsessed with King Lear in the world premiere of MUCH ADO ABOUT DYING.

David has been given months to live but ‘improves’ when Simon arrives and they embark on a five-year odyssey from the squalor of David’s rubbish-filled flat. Simon tries to curb David’s urge to give all his money away to his handsome Brazilian carer and friendly but self-interested neighbours. Despite the house burning down, homelessness, cancer, and the dreaded ‘care home’, Simon helps David to create an exuberant final performance to send him on his way. Though at times painfully intimate, Chambers’ film ultimately celebrates a joyous spirit which transcends the indignities of old age.

This screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Simon Chambers.

At the IFI: Wed 21 Sept at 20.45 / 83 mins, Ireland-UK, 2022

  • In a war-torn and impoverished corner of Eastern Ukraine, where drug addiction casts a long shadow, sits a safe haven for at-risk children temporarily removed from their parents. This Irish Premiere of A HOUSE MADE OF SPLINTERS, follows three such kids waiting to know if they are to return to broken homes, or be fostered to new parents, while a group of dedicated social workers create small moments of joy and respite for childhoods all but lost. Director Simon Lereng Wilmont follows up his acclaimed debut, The Distant Barking of Dogs, with a unique look into how the long-term consequences of war impact the most vulnerable members of society.

The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Simon Lereng Wilmont.

At the IFI: Thurs 22 Sept at 18.20 and IFI@Home: Thurs 22 Sept at 18.00 (three-day rental) / 88 mins, Denmark-Ukraine-Sweden, 2022)

  • On the outskirts of Beirut, Lilas and Shery, co-founders of Slave to Sirens, the Middle East’s first all-female thrash metal group, wrestle with friendship, sexuality, and the destruction of their city in their pursuit of financial success and critical recognition. Directed by Rita Baghdadi, SIRENS shows how against a backdrop of political unrest, the Sirens are a beacon of expression, resistance, and independence. As the complicated friendship between Lilas and Shery begins to fracture, Lilas must decide what kind of leader she will be, not only for her band, but also as a young woman struggling to define herself in Lebanon, a region of the Middle East as complex as the Sirens themselves.

At the IFI: / 80 mins, USA-Lebanon, 2022 [F-Rated]

  • From directors Simon Wood & Francois Verster comes GIRL, TAKEN. Baby Zephany Morne was stolen from hospital three days after her birth in Cape Town, April 1997. For 17 years, her devastated parents Morne and Celeste Nurse searched for her, making regular media appeals, hiring private detectives and following false leads. Then in 2015, their second daughter, Cassidy, enrolled in a new school, where she befriended an older pupil, Miche Solomon, who looked remarkably like her. Eventually the difficult truth of Miche’s origins is revealed. This gripping story (from Irish producers Soilsiú Films) told through extensive archive and frank interviews with the nurses and with Miche’s ‘adoptive’ family, chronicles the disintegration of two families and their difficult path back to wholeness.

At the IFI: Thurs 22 Sept at 20.20  and IFI@Home: From Thurs 22 Sept at 18.00 (three-day rental) / 92 mins, Ireland-South Africa

  • While making a documentary about the CIA/MI6 coup in Iran in 1953, Iranian director Taghi Amirani and editor Walter Murch (Apocalypse Now, The Conversation, The English Patient) discover never seen before archive material hidden for decades. The 16mm footage and documents not only allow the filmmakers to tell the story of the overthrow of the Iranian government in unprecedented detail, but it also leads to explosive revelations about dark secrets buried for 67 years. Working with Ralph Fiennes to help bring the lost material to life, what begins as a historical documentary about four days in August 1953 turns into a live investigation, taking the filmmakers into uncharted cinematic waters. The roots of Iran’s volatile relationship with America and Britain have never been so forensically and dramatically exposed as in COUP 53.

The screening will be followed by a Q&A with Taghi Amirani and Walter Murch

At the IFI: Fri 23 Sept at 18.00 & IFI@Home: available now (three-day rental) / 119 mins, Iran-UK-USA, 2019

  • The IFI is delighted to present a public interview with the multi Oscar winner WALTER MURCH, in partnership with Screen Ireland. The legendary editor whose extraordinary career includes The Godfather Part II, Apocalypse Now (for which he won his first Oscar) and The English Patient which garnered him an unprecedented double Oscar for sound and film editing. Join us on Sat 24 Sept when he will be in conversation to discuss his fascinating career.

At the IFI: Sat 24 Sept at 13.00

  • Once again audiences can enjoy short cinematic gems as the IRISH SHORTS PROGRAMME

showcases boundary-pushing films that span the full spectrum of documentary form. Wielding observational, poetic and participatory modes of storytelling, the programme demonstrates innovation and excellence in contemporary, short form, non-fiction filmmaking. The Irish Shorts Programme audience away will be presented at this screening.  Shorts will include: Mount Trenchard, Jamie Goldrick, 17 mins; Love Song to a Bicycle, Johnny Gogan and Laura McMorrow, 20 mins; A Stone Place, James Skerritt, 9 mins; They Killed Us For Existing, Meghan O’Shaughnessy, 10 mins; Vonnie – Ireland’s Forgotten Fashion Icon, Renata Lima, 17 mins; Because, Frank, Francis Higgins, 6 mins; and Call Me Mommy, Tara O’Callaghan, 15 mins. The Audience Award, presented at the screening, is kindly supported by Screen Scene.

At the IFI: Saturday 24th at 15.00

  • Pigeon racing is now a multi-million dollar industry, attracting high-stakes competitors from all around the globe. Pigeon fanciers register their prize racers, box them up and dispatch them to faraway places to compete in a series of lucrative races, but corruption lurks in the wings. Affluent owners from the US, China and elsewhere enter as many birds as their hearts desire while the lads in the pigeon club in Clondalkin, faced with the hefty entry fees, send just a carefully-chosen few. MILLION DOLLAR PIGEONS, from Director Gavin Fitzgerald (Venom Films) invites us into an unknown world where tensions simmer between old-time purists and the new breed whose eyes are fixed firmly on the big prize. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Gavin Fitzgerald and pigeon fancier John O’Brien.

At the IFI: Sat 24 Aug at 16.00 / 92 mins, Ireland, 2022

  • ATOMIC HOPE – INSIDE THE PRO-NUCLEAR MOVEMENT follows a tiny global movement of unpopular pro-nuclear activists, who strongly believe we need nuclear power in order to decarbonise our energy systems and avoid calamitous climate change. Filmed over a ten-year period by director Frankie Fenton, these advocates for nuclear energy come from all over the world. Their opponents cite nuclear meltdowns, extortionate construction costs, radiation fears and nuclear waste as indisputable reasons to reject this technology. The pro-nuclear crew take on these arguments urging scientists, citizens and policy makers to take a sober look at the science, halt the mass closure of nuclear power plants and fully reconsider nuclear energy as a viable solution to imminent catastrophe. The screening will be followed by a discussion investigating nuclear power from both sides of the argument.

At the IFI: Sat 24 Sept at 18.00 / 82 mins, Ireland, 2022

  • Focusing her prophetic words and deeds from 1987-1993, the film reflects on the legacy of fearless trailblazer Sinéad O’Connor, through a contemporary feminist lens. This archive-led documentary, directed by Kathryn Ferguson, features era-defining music videos and concert performances alongside a range of contributions from friends and fellow artists and a wealth of previously unseen footage conjuring a vivid reminder of life in Ireland at this time. NOTHING COMPARES is underpinned by a new interview with Sinéad herself, in which she reflects on her early career, her visibility and her vulnerability as a radical young woman on the world stage.

At the IFI: Sat 24 Sept at 20.40 / 100 mins, Ireland, 2022.

  • Against the backdrop of New Delhi’s worsening environmental crisis and escalating violence, brothers Saud and Nadeem devote their time to protecting one victim of the turbulent times, the bird known as the black kite. From a makeshift bird hospital in their tiny basement, the brothers care for thousands of the creatures that drop daily from the city’s smog-choked skies. The empathetic and concerned relationship between this Muslim family and the neglected birds forms a poetic counterpoint to the city’s collapsing ecology and rising social tensions. Shaunak Sen’s poignant film ALL THAT BREATHES was a deserving winner of the Golden Eye Award for Best Documentary at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival. Irish premiere.

At the IFI: Sun 25 Sept at 13.20 / 97 mins, India-UK-USA, 2022

  • THE ARTIST & THE WALL OF DEATH: When Glaswegian performance artist, Stephen Skrynka, learns that a life-long obsession with building and riding a ‘Wall of Death’ was shared with Michael Donohoe and Connie Kiernan (who built a wall in 1979 and inspired the film Eat the Peach), he heads to their farm in Co. Longford with an audacious proposal: construct a new ‘Wall of Death’ with him and take it on tour. Though the Wall is painstakingly constructed, a painful argument between the trio brings the endeavour skidding to a halt. Devastated, Stephen returns to Glasgow to lick his wounds, emerging mid-pandemic to fight another day. This captivating yarn explores the relentless determination of an artist to realise his dream. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Maurice O’Brien and producer John Kelleher.

At the IFI: Sun 25 Sept at 15.30 / 86 mins, Ireland-UK, 2022

  • Prog rock icons King Crimson have, over the past 50 years, cycled through 20+ members, the one constant being band leader and guitar impresario Robert Fripp, a sartorially elegant, uncompromising perfectionist who inspires devotion in his fans and strikes terror into the hearts of fellow musicians. IN THE COURT OF THE CRIMSON KING: KING CRIMSON AT 50, director Toby Amies followed the group for three years, and, in career-spanning interviews with collaborators, ex-band members, and new recruits that grew up fans of the band they are now in, captures the sonic alchemy of this unique outfit. As Fripp puts it, ‘this is the first King Crimson where there’s not at least one member in the band that actively resents my presence’. Irish premiere.

At the IFI: Sun 25 Sept at 18.00 / 86 mins, UK, 2022

  • THE PECULIAR SENSATION OF BEING PAT INGOLDSBY investigates the idiosyncratic world of the Irish writer. Ingoldsby’s poems and candid anecdotes bear witness to a visceral relationship with his beloved Dublin and its many social, institutional and architectural changes over 80 years. He is fondly remembered as an eccentric 1980s TV presenter (Pat’s Hat, Pat’s Chat) and more recently as a stalwart of the Dublin streets where he recites and sells his many books of poetry. Director Seamus Murphy has crafted a moving and entertaining portrait of a maverick who has faced personal challenges with apparent equanimity finding balm in his writing which infuses the banality of the everyday with surreal humour.

The screening will be introduced by producer Tom Burke

At the IFI: Sun 25 Sept at 20.00 / 80 mins, Ireland, 2022

For more see: and

IFI Documentary Festival is supported by RTÉ Supporting the Arts.

The IFI acknowledges the support of the Arts Council.

The IFI is supported
by The Arts Council

Arts Council of Ireland