T. int.: Night of the Storyteller. M.: John Goldman. Prod.: Gaumont-British Picture Corporation Ltd. 35mm. D.: 20′. Bn.
The short Oidhche sheanchais affirms Flaherty’s belief in cinema as a mythopoeic and folkloric art. Ireland’s first government-sponsored film, Oidhche sheanchais was funded by a modest £ 200 budget assigned for the production of an Irish language talkie enshrining a vital element of the national heritage. Flaherty directed the film while in London recording the post-synch sound for Man of Aran, using that film’s cast together with Seáinín Tom Ó Dioráin, a renowned Aran island storyteller. Unlike Man of Aran, Oidhche sheanchais was recorded entirely in Irish. Prior to the film’s release the Irish Press distributed a dialogue transcript to ensure that “children will… not miss any of the beauty and subtlety of the story it tells”.
Haden Guest, Sunniva O’Flynn