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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "I'm Irish, racism is part of my culture."
There are countless films about maverick cops who take the law into their own hands, they are usually self-styled and sexy with no respect for authority and attract reluctant admiration by their superiors and peers. Sergeant Gerry Boyle isn't quite one of those, he's an overweight policeman from a who's disillusioned with life, his job, and breaks rule not to get the job...
Published on 22 Feb 2012 by @GeekZilla9000

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Brendan ,,,,,,,!!
Its ok not great.,,,,more expectation because Mr Gleason is in it but failed to impress and I hope the Irish Film board dont juts pay for any old tripe from now on,,,
Published 5 months ago by Mr. Derek Henry Burns


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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "I'm Irish, racism is part of my culture.", 22 Feb 2012
By 
@GeekZilla9000 "I am completely operational a... (Doncaster, Yorkshire, UK.) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Guard [Blu-ray] [2011] (Blu-ray)
There are countless films about maverick cops who take the law into their own hands, they are usually self-styled and sexy with no respect for authority and attract reluctant admiration by their superiors and peers. Sergeant Gerry Boyle isn't quite one of those, he's an overweight policeman from a who's disillusioned with life, his job, and breaks rule not to get the job done but because he simply doesn't care that much anymore.

Boyle is the kind of policeman who checks a corpse for money before reporting, he plays with evidence to amuse himself and stops off for a pint or two during his shift. He's a bent cop but interestingly you identify with him, his dry humour and cynicism. You get the sense that he's actually a decent guy who has seen a lot of life, concluded that it's not fair and his misdemeanours are small fry and insignificant compared to life's greater injustices - such as the death of his wife and the imminent demise of his mother. His unsubtle cavalier approach contrasts with those of the visiting FBI agent - and the two find themselves working together on the biggest case to hit the small village. Those wanting a laugh-a-minute barrage of knob-gags and jaunty jokes may be disappointed, the humour here is dark and much of it comes from the politically incorrect script. Some of the characters are over-the-top but overall the film is grounded in reality thanks to Brendon Gleeson's natural performance. The plot is nothing special, it's just a vehicle for Sgt. Boyle and it's fully justified because the film saunters along and the character is allowed to dominate, this is a film about Boyle which follows a well-tested formula without ever looking formulaic.

The Blu-Ray transfer appears okay, details tend to be well rendered and apart from once scene which seemed more grainy than all the others it doesn't look too shabby. The film is directed with an artistic flare and backgrounds tend to have bright colours which is often used to accent a scene. Natural light seems to be used a lot and some shots are striking because of their symmetry (early scenes set on a pier show it central to a pin-point accuracy). The extras on the dick include a making of and plenty of interviews with cast and crew - they show that clearly everyone enjoyed working on the film. As a fan of sort film I enjoyed the inclusion of "The Second Death" which is a strong offering and means that the bonus features together provide over an hour of additional viewing. The Second Death is a poignant short and you can see some of the seeds of The Guard present within this moody, melancholic character piece.

In a nutshell: Two very different officers joining forces and coming to respect and even like each other has been done a thousand times before - but this feel unique and abandons easy clichés in favour of a strong central character. It won't be to everyone's taste (nothing ever is) and the uneventful story feels a bit slow at times but there's no doubting that Sergeant Boyle is one of films greatest recent characters.
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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Once upon a time in the West, 22 Aug 2011
By 
Aidan J. McQuade (Ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
This may not be to everyone's taste, but if you are not upset by profuse profanity, if you don't mind coarse humour, if you appreciate a bit of moral ambiguity, and if you enjoy a dash of philosophy with your violence, then this is a movie you will love.

The film stars the great Brendan Gleeson, who has been quietly building a reputation for himself as one of the finest movie actors about, as a small town cop in Connemara, and the brilliant Don Cheedle as an FBI man arriving in Galway on the trail of a bunch of international drugs traffickers. But the whole cast is composed of some of the finest actors currently working, including Liam Cunningham, Mark Strong and Fionuala Flanagan.

At heart the film is a buddy movie about the mismatched cops Cheedle and Gleeson and in the midst of all the prickly dialogue between the two it satisfies all the expectations that one would have of such a movie with a great "shoot-em-up" ending. It also makes some nice subtle political points: in spite of the jokey xenophobia of the central character it is the foreign characters, Croatian, African and African-American who are, along with the character of Gleeson's mother, the most dignified and attractive figures portrayed; Dublin and Dubliners are the butt of many of the film's jokes, a nice counter-balance to Dubliners' tendency to treat non-"Pale" Ireland (ie the area that is not Dublin) as a lesser place.

If this film doesn't leave you with a smile on your face its difficult to know what will. Its great stuff!
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cracking Film, 28 Sep 2011
This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
Just saw this at the cinema. I laughed out loud. I appreciated the characters. I have written the first ever review of a film on this site. I will be recommending this to other people. Need I say more?
It's low budget, swears a lot, and very very non pc - but a good film none the less.
I will buy it when it's on DVD. Definitely worth watching.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must see, 24 Nov 2011
By 
SJTricks (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
I saw this film at a proper cinema and would go again if I could find it on at a decent cinema. It is a warm hearted unPC movie with nice twists. Please order , it will be watched again and again.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LAUGH OUT LOUD - BRILLIANT, 19 Jan 2013
By 
Dave R "katsd" (Nottingham) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
This is basically a buddy movie - usual mis-matched lead characters who start off with nothing but contempt & end up with respect for each other. It's not going to be everyone's taste but if you don't mind bad language, violence & racist jokes, you will enjoy it. Think humour along the lines of "In Bruges" "Divorcing Jack" etc & you get the picture.

Brendan Gleeson is becoming stereotyped in this sort of role, but he plays it perfectly. A renegade cop with a taste for prostitutes & drugs but can't stand corruption & loves his dying mum. Don Cheadle plays the American, straight laced, Ivy League, FBI agent on the trail of a gang of international drug smugglers. Mark strong is the drugs lord who is depressed with the corruption & stupidity in the police he has to deal with.

There are so many cracking one-liners, you'll find yourself reaching for the rewind on the remote just to hear them again. Particularly funny scenes for me were the FBI briefing at the station, Mark Strong paying off the police at the swimming pool & Liam Cunningham trying to pay off Gleeson in a cafe.

This is one the few films I've bought after watching it on Lovefilms, it's so funny I needed to watch it again straight away.

Delicious
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Drugs, Bullets, Hookers and Homicide in the West of Ireland, 12 Jan 2013
This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
Brendan Gleeson's slobbish policeman Sergeant Gerry Doyle, appears to be an embarrassment to the Galway Guarda. However, the arrival of bullish FBI agent Everett played by the excellent Don Cheadle, forces Doyle into reluctant action, and it soon becomes clear that there is much more to the seemingly one-dimensional oaf than he wants to let on.
Akin to recent movies such as In Bruges [DVD] and Seven Psychopaths [Blu-ray] [2012] [US Import], The Guard is a comedy of the blackest hue, and easily merits its 18 certificate. However, it's well worth seeing for Gleeson's performance alone, and with strong support from Cheadle, and the likes of Mark Strong as a bullet-headed drugs smuggler, this is a delight from start, to surprising finish.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the film of the year, 12 Feb 2012
By 
Nikolaos Oikonomidis (Thessaloniki Greece) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
I had neglected visiting the amazon page for The Guard up till now, and I was sorry and amazed to find out it was getting so low rates. I found the movie an excellent one, and after having watched it a few times I definitely consider it one of my favorites of the last years and perhaps the most beautiful movie I have watched this year(and I watch almost everything).It is genuine, funny, stylish, and generous in feelings. It has also been filmed masterfully, being at the same time meaningful and special, a million miles away from the usual receipes that recycle boring (and safe) ideas of filming and seriouslike pose, that is pointless underneath. The Guard has totally won my heart!
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Genuinely excellent, 6 July 2012
By 
A. Whitehead "Werthead" (Colchester, Essex United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
Sergeant Gerry Boyle is an atypical Irish garda (policeman): he takes drugs, hires prostitutes and has no problem interfering with a crime scene. He also has an instinctive talent for police work and an impressive amount of luck. When an international drug smuggling operation is discovered operating in the Galway area, Boyle is forced to partner American FBI agent Wendell Everett to bring the smugglers to justice.

On paper, The Guard sounds like a cliche-in-waiting: a chalk and cheese buddy cop movie, in which the straight-laced FBI agent teams up with the slightly crazy Irish policeman and they fail to get along, before circumstances makes them appreciate the other's approach, leading to a happy ending and mutual respect.

This isn't that film. Instead, The Guard is an offbeat, frequently hilarious and well-characterised mini-masterpiece. The normally-excellent Brendan Gleeson is indomitably magnificent in the central role of Boyle, an offbeat and weird policeman who delights in randomly odd acts, whilst Don Cheadle is considerably more restrained (until his frustration explodes into expletive-strewn invective) as Everett. The two actors have a great chemistry which drives the film along. Another important ingredient is the interplay between our three principal villains (Liam Cunningham's Francis, David Wilmot's Liam and Mark Strong's Clive), who break up the monotony between murderous drug jobs by engaging in philosophical quote-offs and debating how best to recruit nameless goon minions.

The film's setting is also key. From the point of view of someone who lived there for a year, Galway and Connemara (a Gaelic-speaking region to the west of the city) are depicted very well. One of director John Michael McDonagh's more amusing quirks is to stage the film like a Western, with Ireland standing in for the American West, complete with saloons and shoot-outs (the film also features one of the better uses of the Chekhov's gun rule). This adds to the film's offbeat atmosphere.

The movie also features some amusing commentary about the cliches of buddy cop films and their predictability, which the film then fails to adhere to. There are also some nice emotional beats (such as the relationship between Boyle and his dying mother, and the complex relationship between Boyle's police sidekick and his wife) but these are handled subtly and not laboured over. The film ends on a note of ambiguity, which the movie then lampoons mercilessly just for the hell of it.

The Guard (*****) is a genuinely funny, outrageous and smart movie. It is available now in the UK (DVD, Blu-Ray) and USA (DVD, Blu-Ray).
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As Good As In Bruges, maybe better!, 15 July 2011
This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
Brendan Gleeson and Don Cheadle team up as mis-matched cops to bring down a 500 million euro drug shipment due to arrive in Connemara any day. Mark Strong is excellent as the international drug barren but its easily Gleeson who steals the show as the country cop who plays up to his image as a village idiot. The film is a must see for fans of brilliant black comedies like In Bruges. 5 stars all the way.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dialogue, characters and unrushed pace. Brilliant., 21 April 2012
This review is from: The Guard [DVD] (DVD)
International drugs gang come to sleepy rural island and FBI need local police support to help tackle them.

Funny, funny dialogue throughout, lovely pace and deadpan delivery from Gleeson.

Strong movie that stands out for itself rather than any accompanying razzmatazz.

Watch & enjoy.
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The Guard [Blu-ray] [2011]
The Guard [Blu-ray] [2011] by John Michael McDonagh (Blu-ray - 2012)
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