Hard hitting terrorist drama ‘Carlos’ screens at the Arts Centre


Terorrism as a subject and films about terrorists have become more commonplace in recent years as the wider public’s interest in understanding what drives people to commit violent crimes of a political nature has increased.

The name Ilich Ramírez Sanchez may not ring a bell, but his nom de guerre “Carlos” certainly will – or “Carlos the Jackal”, to use his media sobriquet. Olivier Assayas’ sprawling, energetic film ‘Carlos’ which screens at 8 p.m., next Thursday, the 3rd of February at Nenagh Arts Centre offers an encyclopedic fictionalised take on the enigmatic icon of 1970s terrorism – from glory days as international folk demon to declining years on the run.

Sanchez himself, whose career ended when he was seized by French agents in Sudan in 1994, has been reportedly telling the media that he was upset over the film’s version of his most notorious exploit, the kidnapping of a couple of dozen ministers at the headquarters of OPEC in Vienna in 1975. Three guards were killed in the operation, which ended when he flew his hostages to the Middle East and released them.

Despite this, the film, originally a 5 1/2 hour television series, now cut down to a slimmer two and a half hours for mainstream release has been lauded by critics: “Assayas grabs political melodrama between his teeth, with the verve of Michael Mann elbowing into John le Carré territory. A compelling rival to Spielberg’s similarly themed Munich and way ahead of the ropey ‘The Baader Meinhof Complex’”said Jonathan Romney of the Independent. Indeed the film featured at last years Cannes  Film Festival and won the 2010 Golden Globe award for the ‘Best Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television’.

Tickets are €6 and booking online for all Arts Centre events is available at www.nenagharts.com

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