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4.7 out of 5 stars112
4.7 out of 5 stars
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 8 February 2012
Anyone who says this excellent biopic of Christie Brown is easy watching is lying. Daniel Day Lewis, as far back as 22 years ago transforms both himself completely; bodily and character-wise and onto his first Oscar.

What is refreshing is that the story isn't about a poor wee lad, almost totally crippled (except for that left foot) from birth with cerebral palsy who has no friends, because he has. It's about his sheer fighting spirit & utter determination that gets respect but he also breaks hearts. He uses that foot to score a winning goal in the street but his stoic exasperation often sends his mother to despair. If you thought that Casualty only existed around the firm but fair senior nurse way back when, played by Brenda Fricker, here she is in wonderful Oscar winning form.

Girls are touched by Christy's attention, guys admire his guts and outright cheek. Christy becomes a noted poet and artist, either typed out one character at a time or with a brush, both by using the big toe and adjoining toe of that left foot.

It also casts a revealing spotlight on hard working Dublin family life in the (I estimate) '50s & '60's.

Quote: (Specialist doctor comes to visit him at home. Mother knocks on his bedroom door. A muffled, incoherent expletive is his reply) "I can teach you how to say **ck off more clearly, Christy" the female doctor replies. The start of a real road to self realisation begins.

Believe me, you'll wince, laugh, cry and triumph all the way with this one and one that you'll remember for a long, long time to come.
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on 26 March 2004
True stories, or films based on true stories are rarely the stuff of Oscars. Allto often they get bypassed by production money, for the lack of stunts and hyper realities; thus if made tend to be b-movies, or acted by a cast of supermodels who lack credability. To find such a moving story about Christy Brown, who overcomes his cerebal palsy,is a little gem, watch this if only for Daniel Day Lewis's amazing performance, which is on a par with John Mills's transformation.
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on 23 March 2012
********** may contain a few slight spoilers ***********

An excellent film about the life and times of christy brown an irish painter who was also a cerebral palsy sufferer, the difficulties christy faced in his day to day life due to his condition and his relationships with other people particularly his mother are central to the story.

Christy was born into a large working class family in the 1930's, the directer portrays this very well with the miserable looking grey concrete, small dark and cramped house, in his very early life christy was considered to be mentally disabled as well as physically disabled with remarks like "D is for dunce" there are several other comments of the same nature all made within the first 30 minutes, this amplifies the impact when christy picks a piece of chalk up with his left foot and writes the word mother on the floor.

His relationship with his mother was also strong with her devotion to him evident from the start, there is a scene early in the film where she is carrying him up the stairs while heavily pregnant and saving every penny she can to buy a wheelchair for him despite the extreme poverty the family suffered, her great understanding of her son is also made clear several times during the film, at one point after christy has received speech therapy his father says " at least you can understand your child now " her response is " i always understood him "

The acting is superb from all of the cast members, in particular the performance put in by daniel day lewis which is simply flawless, well written, well acted and well directed
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on 22 March 2013
I've been wanting to see this film for years and for some unknown reason i never managed to until recently.
It's very good.
D.D.Lewis is very good.
But what a lot of reviewers seem to fail to mention is that the young actor, Hugh O'Connor, who plays Kristy brown as a boy, is every bit as riveting a performance as his grown up counter part. And without his marvellous contribution, DDLewis wouldn't have had the platform to leap into the second half of the film. It most definately would have been a lop sided affair. So hats (and socks) off to the casting director.
Some of the editing jars a little, but there's no getting away from the power and the intensity not only of DDLewis's central performance, but the ensemble as a whole. What i probably enjoyed most about DDLewis's performance was how sparingly he played the part. Portraying a character that had to fight for everything he achieved. Creating a hardened exterior in order, not only to survive the day to day poverty and physical barriers he had to endure and overcome, but also, to guard his poet's sensibility. A Fragile yet fearless man. Tormented by the body's restrictions and frustrated by his artist's need to express the love he wanted to give, and the love he most desperately sought to recieve.
It is a film that was made on a shoestring budget, £600,000 and went to video in this country, within about a fortnight after its release.........and subsequently made about $15,000,000.upon its release in the U.S And won numerous awards globally.
The rest is history.
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on 25 May 2009
An incredible film. Daniel Day Lewis well deserved his oscar for his astonishing portrayal of the hugely inspirational Christy Brown, and he was supported by an amazingly talented cast, most notably Brenda Fricker and Hugh O'Conor, who played his mother and the young Christy Brown respectively, both of whom speak volumes without uttering a word. A beautiful and truly moving film, well worth watching.
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"My Left Foot," (1989), is a biographical drama on the life of Christy Brown, an Irish cerebral palsy sufferer who achieved international renown for his writing and painting, all done by his left foot, the only part of his anatomy that he could control. It was based on his book, and directed by the Irish Jim Sheridan. And, although it strongly resembles the television disease-of-the-week movies the networks used to make at that time, it soars far beyond them. Among other accomplishments, it won two Academy Awards, took a further sixteen awards elsewhere, and had fourteen further nominations.

To begin with,most of the disease-of-the-week movies were set in generic Anytown, U.S.A. "My Left Foot" is set very specifically in mid-20th century Dublin, among its working poor. The film renders its location with detailed accuracy-- the look, the sound, the clothes, the feel, the mores, the cars, the housing, the "crac," or wit of its people.

The film also benefits from some remarkable acting. Daniel Day Lewis (There Will Be Blood (Single Disc Edition) [DVD] [2007]) won an Oscar for his portrayal of the adult Christy, witty, arrogant, vulgar, and strongly into drink and women when he could get them. It was probably the best role in Day Lewis's career, and he really inhabited it to a stunning degree. Brenda Fricker (Trauma [DVD] [2004])also won an Oscar for playing his lioness-defending-her-cub mother. Two other performances were outstanding, though they failed to impress Oscar voters: Hugh O'Conor (Bloom [2004] [DVD]) was memorable as the young Christy. And Ray McAnally (A Very British Coup [DVD] [1988] [US Import]) powerfully defined the typical hard-nosed Irish working class father of the time. (Unfortunately, he died soon after completion of filming.) The picture introduced the pretty and pleasant Ruth McCabe (The Snapper by Colm Meaney, Tina Kellegher, Ruth McCabe, und Roddy Doyle (DVD - 2007) IMPORT), featured fine actors Fiona Shaw (Mind Games [DVD]), and Cyril Cusack (Waltz of the Toreadors [DVD]), and gave us the frequently-seen Adrian Dunbar (Kidnapped [DVD])in a small part.

The picture does wear its heart on its sleeve. It strongly implies that Christy achieved what he did because his family loved and supported him, and included him in everything they did. And that's not to say that maybe the film isn't right.
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on 29 May 2010
This is the ultimate classic which launched Daniel Day-Lewis. Possibly his greatest one.

If you're thinking twice for getting it. Stop. Hit Add to Cart now because you won't get wrong with this one.
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on 12 March 2008
I didn't want to watch this film, but my wife persuaded me. I'm glad she did. The acting is superb. Brenda Fricker carries off the role of Christie's mum flawlessly. Daniel Day Lewis is so convincing as the cerebral palsy sufferer that it is a shock to realise he is acting! Hugh O'Connor acts the young Christie and is equally convincing.
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on 3 September 2011
a great film - saw it first time round on tv whn i was younger - now i have bought it and can watch as often as i like - great acting.
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on 11 December 2014
I'm fortunate to be one of many people who's work involves supporting people with disabilities, some of whom profoundly so.

I can only think that this film with it's great actors will help everyone to understand more about what living with such a disability can mean to those people who have not the courage that Christie Brown created for himself as he reached maturity.

I'm always concerned when people talk about 'being normal'…what is normal?

I believe that people who 'speak in guttural sounds' feel that they are communicating with the sound and senses that most non-disabled feel about their voice. Anyway, if you didn't see this portrayal of Christie Brown, just see it if you can. How anyone can not award this film 5 stars is beyond comprehension.
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