In 1952, Bill Rowan is eighteen years old and dreaming his life away at the family’s riverside home, waiting to be called up for two years’ conscription in the British army. His dream is shattered by the harsh realities of boot camp. There, he meets Percy, an amoral prankster. They are rivals and antagonist, but they gradually forge a deep friendship in the claustrophobic environment of a closed, prison-like training camp. The pressure is briefly relieved by excursions into the outside world, where they both fall in love. Finally, Bill is confronted with the shattered lives of wounded boys returning from Korea.
Written and directed by John Boorman and starring Richard E. Grant, David Thewlis, Caleb Landry Jones, Callum Turner, Pat Shortt, Tamsin Egerton, Sinead Cusack and Vanessa Kirby.
On New Year’s Eve 1944, American pilot Mike Clarke inadvertently bets Al Capone’s nephew $10,000 that he can shoot down five enemy aircrafts on his life. Later, a forced landing due to a fuel shortage sees Mike in a remote part of Ireland. Mike learns that communication with the rest of the world is not easy and that his hopes of re-joining the war effort (and winning his fatal bet) are slim. Stranded, he eventually befriends the eccentric villagers and meets the fiery Maggie. Mike and Maggie soon grow close as she shows him how to win his bet while winning her heart in the process.
John Boorman’s The Tiger’s Tail is the story of Liam O’Leary (Brendan Gleeson), an Irish property developer of humble origins, who has become wealthy and powerful on the back of the “Celtic Tiger”, Ireland ‘s recent economic boom. His ambition to build a national stadium is being thwarted by a rival developer and Liam finds himself struggling in a recession-hit market. Under pressure and over-stretched, he seems on the verge of a nervous breakdown when, to his horror, he sees his double. As Liam searches for answers, his wife, Jane (Kim Cattrall), and son Connor (Brian Gleeson), anxious about his strange behaviour, believe his claim to have seen his double is an hallucination. Only his sister Oona (Sinead Cusack) and childhood friend Andy (Ciaran Hinds), a priest, believe him. When Liam eventually confronts his double, a shocking truth about his past is revealed to him, a truth that shakes his self-belief leading him and others to doubt his own identity.
Stardust recounts the tragic Stardust nightclub fire of 1981 in Dublin, Ireland, in which 48 people lost their lives.
Seamus is a nine-year-old boy has been diagnosed with a serious illness. In search of a miracle, he sets off to find God and, inspired by Saint Columcille, launches a small boat without oars or sail. On his quest he encounters James and Darry, and despite initial differences, the trio set out on a moving journey that heals hearts and minds.
This story follows the establishment of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in post-apartheid South Africa, in which the perpetrators of racial violence and injustice must come face to face with their victims if they are to be forgiven for their crimes. Langston Whitfield (Samuel L. Jackson) is an African-American journalist who is assigned to cover these hearings by The Washington Post. As part of his brief, Whitfield pursues Col. De Jager (Brendan Gleeson) for an interview, a notorious former officer of the South African police who was famous for his violence against black people. Whitfield meets Anna Malan (Juliette Binoche), an Afrikaner poet who is also covering the hearing for a radio station and who is horrified by the details of the violence inflicted against her countrymen. Whitfield and Malan’s friendship soon develops into something more as they each try to deal with the appalling revelations being made before them.
Desmond Doyle (Pierce Brosnan) suddenly becomes a single father when his wife abandons their family on the day after Christmas. The authorities, with little sympathy for his plight, insist that he is not capable of caring for his three children alone. Against their wishes, the children are taken from their father and placed in institutional care. Although assured that his children will be returned to him when his financial situation improves, Desmond faces an uphill struggle during hard times to win them back. In the meantime, his children must suffer the cruelty and suffering that dominate their new ‘home’. Desmond must fight for his own children and for the right to be their father.
Sophie Vavasseur, Political Film Society, USA 2003
In The Tailor of Panama, John Boorman brings John LeCarre’s spy thriller to the big screen. British spy Andrew Osnard (Brosnan) is banished to Panama following an indiscretion with an ambassador’s mistress. Once there, he connects with a local tailor, Harry Pendel (Geoffrey Rush) with a dubious past and access to all the major political and criminal figures in Panama. The tailor, who is in serious financial difficulty, is married to an administrator to the Panama government. Osnard’s mission is to gather senstivie information regarding the President’s intentions for the Panama Canal. Osnard has no qualms in using Pendel to get what he wants, but the tremendous fictional tale which is then concocted may have more serious repercussions than anticipated.
This tells the real-life story of notorious Dublin gangster and criminal Martin Cahill, who pulled off numerous daring heists in Ireland and headed a dangerous and powerful criminal gang. Cahill attracts unwanted attention from the police, the IRA, the UVF and members of his own team. In particular, his battle of wits with the Irish police is told brilliantly in this hard-edged but often hilarious drama.
A middle-aged teacher discovers photos from his mother’s past that make him ask questions about his father. Travelling to Ireland in search of answers, a past romance slowly unfolds.
Angela Mooney (Mia Farrow) is a woman prepared to die for what she believes in – the local creamery, a business built up by her husband, that is about to be taken over by an American corporation. Angela is afraid that the American company will destroy the soul of the town but her view is not shared by the rest of the people, who are in favour of the buy-out. However, Angela’s real reasons for resistance are revealed via flashback. Angela Mooney Dies Again is a bittersweet, melancholy look at the forces of modernization as they affect a small rural Irish community
Starring John Hurt, David Thewlis and Charles Simon, Journey to Knock humorously follows three men in wheelchairs on their pilgrimage from the North of England to the Holy Shrine at Knock, in the west of Ireland. in Co. Mayo. A blackly funny story of the resilience of the human spirit.
A faithful depiction of how the Anglo-Irish Treaty between the unrecognised Irish Republic, represented by Michael Collins, and the British government was concluded after high-stakes negotiations in 1921.