5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A stunning and well told story.
In 1974 the Irish Republican Army bombed two public houses in Guildford, England-The Horse & Groom and the Seven Stars. 5 people were killed and 65 people were seriously injured. During the wave of public hatred for all things Irish, the police round up Belfast rogue Gerry Conlon and his mate Paul Hill and interrogate for 7 days with brute force to obtain a confession...
Published on 20 Mar. 2013 by Spike Owen
Published 2 months ago by candy
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A stunning and well told story.,
In 1974 the Irish Republican Army bombed two public houses in Guildford, England-The Horse & Groom and the Seven Stars. 5 people were killed and 65 people were seriously injured. During the wave of public hatred for all things Irish, the police round up Belfast rogue Gerry Conlon and his mate Paul Hill and interrogate for 7 days with brute force to obtain a confession... This is Gerry Conlon & the Guildford 4's story.
This is real powerful stuff that thankfully is directed with careful hands. Director Jim Sheridan is equal in his demonizing of the police and the IRA here because it's crucial for us to focus on the Guildford 4. Focus on the Conlon family, for they are victims of injustice when they have no political, or nationalistic affiliations. He centres in on the relationship between Gerry & his father Guiseppe as they find themselves both wrongly imprisoned. It's that family heartbeat that drives this film on, and it's testament to the makers talents that it never comes across as maudlin, it's all very potent and is the films major axis point.
Based on a true story the picture has a finale that will not surprise anyone, but come the last reel you feel emotionally drained, you have come thru the mangler, and myself personally felt both joy and anger in equal measure. Containing brilliant performances from Pete Postelthwaite & Daniel Day Lewis as father & son Conlon respectively, In The Name of The Father is a truly great film that demands not only your head, but also your heart. 9/10
30 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thought provoking, especially in this new political climate,
This movie is one of my favorite movies of all time! It was the movie that introduced me to the genius of Daniel Day Lewis and to the issues of the IRA and Northern Ireland. I was 10 when I first saw this movie and the horror of what it depicted stayed with me. The performances of the actors are brilliant all the way around as is the direction. It made me laugh, it made me cry and probably best of all it made me realize that things aren't always the way they seem, even if it is the police who are giving you the facts.
There are other reviewers who have summarized the movie, so I won't do that here. What I will say is this: apart from the actual story being told in the movie, it is a movie well worth watching because it is still so very current in the issue of terrorism and how we deal with this. The way that the British police treats the people they bring in for "questioning" are horrifyingly similar to the things you hear on the news that the "democratic" nations fighting for democracy in the Middle East are doing to supposed terrorists. This movie forces you to take a good look at your own opinions on post-9/11 legislation, i.e. the PATRIOT Act and other similar laws it spawned. It forces you to think about whether or not you can completely trust the information you are given by a government desperate to put a face on an enemy who is spreading terror amongst the nation's citizens.
I have recommended this movie to pretty much everyone I know and so I will do the same here. I have yet to meet anyone who didn't like it so I can only assume that it is not just me.
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Guilty until proven innocent,
This review is from: In The Name Of The Father [DVD]  (DVD)
If ever a story was worthy of being told on the big screen (and to a big audience), it would have to be this one. It is the story of the Guildford Four, and in particular Gerry (and father Giuseppe) Conlon, who were wrongly imprisoned for the bombing of a pub in Guildford. It is also the story of how the basic human rights of a fair trial and of access to justice were denied by the British government, resulting in one of the most high-profile miscarriages of justice in British history.
Nominated for Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actor (Daniel Day-Lewis) Oscars, "In The Name Of The Father" brought back together the Oscar-winning combination of Jim Sheridan and Day-Lewis ("My Left Foot"). The credentials of this movie speak for themselves, but add to that a subtle soundtrack (with tracks specially written by Bono of U2), and some brilliantly shot scenes of 'The Troubles' in Belfast (and London), and you've got yourself something very special...
True, there are several (somewhat glaring) factual errors in this movie (like the presentation of the new evidence in the appeal courts), but this doesn't in any way detract from the importance of the take-home messages from this movie, those being about the injustice, brutality and inhumanity of a government (and police force) hell-bent on prosecuting someone/anyone they could for what was admittedly a truly horrific crime, but one in which the victims also included those who were put behind bars.
Acting from Day-Lewis and Pete Postlethwaite is particularly outstanding, and the interplay of their characters lends the film an emotional depth rivalled only by a handful of others. Everyone involved in making this movie seems to deal with the subject matter with the utmost respect and gravitas. A great film, despite dealing with some of the most serious issues of liberty and human rights since 'Cry Freedom'... a must-have.
5.0 out of 5 stars The Eternal Return,
A tale for the present, the future and not just a reminder of the bad old days. New Labour vision was to dismantle democracy with 42 days then 90 combined with torture. This documented travesty arose after the introduction of 7 days detention without charges. This film needs constant screening to ensure eternal vigilance is maintained.
It is the anithesis of the "24" propaganga movies. Jack the hero hacking the limbs off "terrorists" to turn the key to stop the president, yet again, from assassination. Many limbless young men and women never sewn together would hobble to the effects of this form of summary justice. Torture; a throwback to the Inquisition brings confession to everything and anything when the rack turns its screw, whether true or not.
The public baying herd stirred by the stick of the media demanded blood sacrifice atonement after the bomb outrages. The backdrop to the arrest of these suspects, assorted hippies squatting in London, no one would miss. The high priests of arrangement acted in the management of appearances. The greater the outrage the more deafening the media clamour for guts and revenge. The outed pariah's the focus of public projection. The outcast; the weaker the better, pays the penalty for the pent up fury. Daniel Day Lewis provides an understated performance documenting a man who withstood a psychological barrage. Trapped within the gaze of the system he was shredded. Fitted up for crimes no one who surveyed the evidence believed they could have committed if they had the opportunity and backing....well it doesn't matter does it?
The courage of those men and woman castigated in this film, defamed and denigrated by the mob are lionised by their resilience. A remarkable clinging to sanity when everything had been swiped away. Unfortunately the state comes out bitter mean and twisted, which is what it is. The one positive to emerge from this debacle is their vindication, their postions transformed from pariah to hero/heroine.
Their lives were transformed when the real hardcore killers arrived in prison. Then Respect becomes written large and visible on the prison walls. Prior to this innocence was equated with weakness.
The architects of this debacle sleep with their reputation and legacy in tatters, tortured forevermore reminded by these misdeeds. The only consolation in a bleak psychological landscape. The film could have turned into schmaltz propaganda with a lesser cast and director, instead it is gripping.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning, compelling and with brilliant performances,
One of the common themes in the reviews I have written for films is that of performances. For me, even a poor narrative can be redeemed by excellence from the cast and certain actors just command your attention. Such a person is Daniel Day Lewis and never is his performance so much the centrepiece of a film than it is here. The narrative is good but like most true stories, especially one as well known as that of The Guildford Four, it is not the film's highlight. We know already that the four were framed, that they spent time in prison for something they didn't do, that there was a witholding of evidence and that it was far from the finest hour for British jurisprudence.
Day Lewis as Gerry Conlon is simply brilliant in this film, it is at time hard to believe that he is the same actor from My Left Foot, There Will Be Blood, The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Room With A View and Gangs of New York. The intensity which he brings to the role and the sheer believability of him is breathtaking and surely, had perhaps the film not been quite so political, he would have won an Oscar.
Another brilliant performance comes from Pete Postlethwaite as Day Lewis's father, Guiseppe and excellent support is given by Emma Thompson as the lawyer who takes up Conlon's case and Corin Redgrave as Dixon, the police officer in charge of the original investigation.
Some of the facts about the case and the persons involved have been ammended in order presumably to make or a tighter narrative, Dixon for example is a character based upon many police officers but this dramatic license does not detract from the central point of the film. All told, this is a compelling film which at various points inspires most of the raft of human emotion as it unravels the story of one of Britain's biggest miscarriages of justice.
5.0 out of 5 stars A poignant reminder of the ills of violence...,
... both individual and institutional.
Films rarely make me angry, because they are films and while good ones engage with feelings deep inside one's psyche, I tend to conceptualise then feel rather than directly feel. This film is one of the few exceptions; I'd go as far as saying that for any politically aware human being, with any amount of sense of respect for justice or equality of treatment this should prove to have the same effects. It works because it is believable, it woks because it is kept simple, down to sound or photography.
This is a film about rebellion, about values, about courage, about justice and the fine consequences of the the absence of any or all of those, in a time of crisis.
Northern Irish conflict is not one of my subjects of speciality but the one thing I cannot help wonder about after watching this is how the conflict ever cooled down with such practices on both sides. I guess the Giuseppes won the real battle, the one which ousts weapons and oppression.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it I know a lot of people think is ...,
This review is from: In the Name of the Father (Amazon Instant Video)
Loved it I know a lot of people think is just fiction and lie but hey I wonder which part is not true, the Part when he spent 15 years in prison for something he didn`t do, the Part when his Father died for something he didn`t do or the Part when he claims his innocence all the way .
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Daniel Day Lewis at his best,
SAFE READING - NO SPOILERS
Other reviewers have gone into great detail of the plot and there is no need for me to duplicate information. Daniel Day Lewis is an actor who chooses his parts with great care and, if the media is to be trusted, prepares for his parts with meticulous and detailed care. The issues of the IRA and Northern Ireland are complex, deeply rooted in both cultures and very difficult for an outsider to judge.
It is very difficult to empathise with people who use terror and indiscriminate bombings to make political points but this film makes a good attempt. It is difficult to fault any of the performances and it will certainly provide food for thought.
16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant,
By A Customer
This review is from: In The Name Of The Father [VHS]  (VHS Tape)
I thought this film was absolutely fantastic. I am currently studying it as part of my A-Level Film Studies course. I was not only moved by Gerry's actions but disturbed by the actions of the British Police Force. Great acting by all of the actors. Well done to a great film.
5.0 out of 5 stars Emotional rollercoaster and great acting,
The movie may depict past events but it is so relevant even now. We are expected to give deference to authority yet the state will conceal for its own ends. Truth is casualty now just like it was then and the innocent suffer. With invasions under false pretences of other sovereign states (vile leaders used as justification when that is not the real motivation at all) and the world almost on the brink of financial collapse in 2008 (and the underlying problems dormant not solved ) you can be damn sure that what you think you hear and see around you can and will be manipulated - including YOU.
Brilliant performances, Pete Postlethwaite underated actor
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In the Name of the Father [DVD]  [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] by Jim Sheridan (DVD - 1998)