Martin Turk – “Cinema Volta”

Inspired by Drago Jančar’s essay “Kino Volta”, Martin Turk’s “Cinema Volta” delves into a fascinating slice of early 20th-century history. In Austro-Hungarian Trieste, a group of fearless entrepreneurs, led by an unknown Dublin English teacher named James Joyce, embarked on a bold venture: opening Ireland’s first full-time cinema.


Italian-Slovenian director Martin Turk and Irish producer Jeremiah Cullinane will be attending the screening for a Q&A

The Birth of Cinema in Trieste

In 1909, Trieste was a bustling port city. Four local businessmen, persuaded by Joyce’s vision, decided to expand their cinema business and establish a permanent cinema in Dublin. This collaboration resulted in the creation of Cinema Volta, a significant milestone in Irish cultural history.

James Joyce’s Vision

Joyce, not yet the literary icon he would become, played a crucial role in convincing the entrepreneurs to undertake this innovative project. His vision and their adventurous spirit brought about the first full-time cinema in Ireland.

A Modern Interpretation

“Cinema Volta” by Martin Turk is a lively, modern exploration of these events, focusing on the dynamic personalities and cultural milieu of Trieste. Turk’s storytelling transports viewers to the early 20th century, highlighting the excitement and creativity that drove this pioneering endeavor.

Celebrating Trieste

The documentary also honors Trieste’s role in this venture, showcasing the city’s importance as a cultural and commercial hub. It emphasizes the innovative drive and cultural exchanges that were essential to this cinematic milestone.

A Captivating Documentary

“Cinema Volta” is a captivating exploration of an obscure yet significant moment in cinema history. Through Martin Turk’s lens, the film celebrates the ambition and spirit of James Joyce and his partners, bringing to life their remarkable journey and the transformative power of creativity.

Director’s Notes

“We all know James Joyce a little bit, but we do not know the entrepreneurs from Trieste who opened the Cinema Volta with him. I started from here to create this documentary. Then, I wanted to make a film that was extremely Triestine, a tribute to my hometown and to the characters involved in the Cinema Volta’s adventure.”
Martin Turk


Saturday 15th at 18:00

IFI ticket link:

There will also be the screening of a short film Sorry by Silvana Benedetto as part of the Dublin Stories programme TICKETS HERE

And also a beautiful film about an Italian poet :  ‘Claps e Peraulis ‘/ Stones and Words by Stefano Giacomuzzi


Martin Turk

Martin Turk was born in 1978 in Trieste and graduated from the Ljubljana Film Academy (AGRFT). He has directed three feature films, selected for numerous international festivals including Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival, Torino Film Festival, Busan International Film Festival, Sarajevo Film Festival, Cinemed Montpellier, and Festa del Cinema di Roma – Alice nellacittà. In 2009, he developed the screenplay for his debut film Feed Me With Your Words at the Cinefondation Residence of the Cannes Film Festival. Turk also teaches Videofilm at the Academy of Art at the University of Nova Gorica (AU UNG).

Selected Filmography

  • 2022:Around the Corner, short film (premiere: Motovun IFF)
  • 2019:Don’tForget To Breathe, feature film (premiere: Festa del Cinema di Roma – Alice Nella Città)
  • 2018:A Good Day’s Work, feature film (premiere: Busan IFF)
  • 2017:Sunday Morning, short film (premiere: Guanajuato IFF)
  • 2016:A Well Spent Afternoon, short film (premiere: Filmfest Dresden ISFF)
  • 2012:Feed Me With Your Words, feature film (premiere: Tallinn Black Nights IFF)
  • 2008:Every Day Is Not The Same, short film (premiere: Quinzaine des Réalisateurs)

 Technical Data

  • Length: 85’
  • Format: DCP, color, black & white
  • Language: Italian, Slovenian, English
  • Year of production: 2024
  • Country: Italy, Slovenia
  • Genre: Documentary


  • Antonio Machnich:DanjielMalalan
  • Caterina Machnich:NiklaPetruškaPanizon
  • James Joyce: Daniel Grimstone
  • Nora Barnacle Joyce: Roisin Browne
  • Giovanni Rebez: Adriano Giraldi
  • Lorenzo Francesco Novak: Franko Korošec
  • Vincenzo Giuseppe Caris: Andrea Germani
  • Giuseppe Tami: Francesco Godina
  • NicolòVidacovich: Paolo Venier


  • Screenwriter and Director: Martin Turk
  • Director of Photography:DarkoHerič ZFS
  • Set Design:ElisabettaFerrandino
  • Costumes:PoloncaValentinčič
  • Hair & Make-up: Angelina Rusin
  • Editor: Beppe Leonetti
  • Sound:JulijZornik
  • Music: August Braatz
  • Produced by: Radovan Mišić, Marta Zaccaron, and Fabiana Balsamo


For more stories HERE




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