Director – Robert Higgins, Patrick McGivney – 2022 – Ireland – Cert. – 100m
The health of an amateur player of Irish football suffers after he gets badly beaten up one night, forcing him to withdraw from playing – out in UK cinemas on Friday, May 5th
Football. Violence. This is a film that soft-soaps neither, yet it has no interest whatever in any justice / revenge plot resolution, opting instead for a very different approach.
It’s actually quite a gentle, downplayed affair focusing on the after effects of violence on a person’s life. It’s a rare foray into the landscape of masculine sensibilities, in a far more thoughtful and considered way than is usual in the cinema. For a start, it’s framed by farming, with protagonist Cian (Éanna Hardwicke) working on his dad’s farm caring for livestock, mucking out cowsheds, driving in fence posts and so forth, a slow, seasonal pace of life. And then his involvement in football (in this case, Irish football, which isn’t something this reviewer has seen much of on the screen, or, indeed, anywhere) is presented as a driving passion in marked contrast to the farming; you get the impression of a full, worthwhile existence, punctuated by nights out drinking with fellow players in the local town’s pubs and clubs.… Read the rest