Here are Our Spotlight Picks for the Dublin International Film Festival

Torna Mulconry

The Dublin International Film Festival (DIFF) returns for the 23rd time this year. Beginning Thursday the 23rd February and finishing 4th March, this nine-day period promises to be a highlight for any Irish film fan. Coincidentally, nine days after the conclusion of the festival, the cast and crew of An Cailín Ciúin, the film that opened last year’s festival will be in attendance for this year’s Oscars, where they are nominated for Best Foreign Film. The question is: which film, documentary or short can become the breakout star of DIFF 2023? Here are our picks:

God’s Creatures

God’s Creatures is a mother and son character study set on the west coast of Ireland, which stars Emily Watson and the eye-catching inclusion of Paul Mescal, fresh off the success of Aftersun. God’s Creatures is sure to be an engaging and ambitious effort due to its casting and placement as the festival opener. The film premiered on Thursday, February 23rd at Light House Cinema.


BlackBerry is a sharp-witted Canadian biopic which draws comparisons to The Social Network and The Office. Yes, it may be hard to fathom the two comparisons, but BlackBerry promises an immersive and quirky biopic of Mike Lazaridis (Jay Baruchel) and Douglas Fregin (Matt Johnson) as they develop the first smartphone. A surprising inclusion however, is “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” star Glenn Howerton, who has delivered a career highlight with his performance. Driving the flick forward as the no-nonsense and quotable Co- CEO of BlackBerry, Howerton is one of the reasons this is an unmissable event. Premiered Wednesday, March 1st  Light House Cinema.

Desperate Souls, Dark City and the Legend of Midnight Cowboy

This Nancy Buirski documentary is the top DIFF pick for film students, as the documentary analyzes one of Hollywood’s most forward-thinking movies: Midnight Cowboy. The documentary delves into the lasting impact of the 1969 classic film and what transitions occurred that allowed this trailblazing male friendship story to appear on our screens to great acclaim. A conversation with Buirski conducted by Conor Ryan can be viewed free of charge ahead of the film’s Irish premiere on the DIFF virtual events web page along with many other panels, shorts, docs and films. It premieres tomorrow in the Light House Cinema

Tickets are available at the link below –

Torna Mulconry