Monday 19 February 2018

Gene Kerrigan: Lights go down on a critic who lived for his love of movies

Invigorating the Dublin journalism scene in the 1980s, Michael Dwyer's passion never diminished, writes Gene Kerrigan

MICHAEL Dwyer was part of a wave of journalists who came to prominence in the peripheral magazines, such as In Dublin, Magill and Hot Press, which thrived in 1980s Dublin.

Around the same time as Colm Toibin, Mary Raftery, Fintan O'Toole, John Waters and a lot more, he helped invigorate the Dublin journalism scene. Toibin went to fiction, Raftery went to broadcasting. O'Toole moved between the arts and politics, Waters wrote plays and songs. And Michael, whomever he wrote for over the next quarter century, stuck fast to his one and only and everlasting journalistic love -- the movies.

Most of us freelancing in the early days did a bit of film reviewing. It was easy -- you just said what the movie was about, issued a verdict on whether it was any good and collected your small cheque. The reigning film critic of the day, Ciaran Carty -- steeped in knowledge and having spent years fighting the censorship that blighted Irish movie-going -- must have sighed at our casual efforts.

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