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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 20 March 2013
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
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on 28 February 2010
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.
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VINE VOICEon 20 January 2004
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.
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on 9 December 2014
Everyone should see this film. It is quite frightening to see the level of corruption which resulted in innocent people tortured, framed and imprisoned as scapegoats for what was a dreadful act of IRA terrorism. This is a story that had to be told and should have seen the perpetrators brought to justice. Unfortunately they appear to have been "above the law". The story was powerfully told. The acting was superb. We all need to be aware of how easy it is for public outrage to put pressure on those in positions of power to "bend " the law in order to satisfy public pressure for a conviction.
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on 16 May 2016
Daniel day Lewis takes a superior acting role in this epic movie based on a true story about the Guilford four pub bombing in 74' and the plight of proving them innocent. Pete Poselthwate plays Gerard Conlins father who is wrongly imprisoned beside his son for a crime they did not commit. We see the atrocities carried out by the British Government and the IRA. Can the tenacious grit of one lawyer free them 'In the Name of the Father'
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on 31 October 2000
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.
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on 12 February 2010
On 5'th October 1974 an IRA bomb exploded in a crowded Guildford pub; killing many and injuring/maiming far more. To me the events which followed, and which this film encapsulates perfectly, demonstrate the ludicrously unjust situations which inevitably arise, when a 'democratic' government insists on being bound by 'the international rule of law' when dealing with terrorists, who quite evidently don't give a damn about the law themselves.

Knowing 'those responsible' have almost certainly left the country, but fearing widespread anti-Irish riots; these same 'respect for justice' politicians have no hesitation in 'secretly' bringing massive pressure(promotion, pensions etc...) on police forces to apprehend 'those responsible'. In blind desperation, the police trawl the area, find a few faces that will 'fit' and manufacture a case against them. A show trial is organized. As the felons are dispatched to prison, an exultant media spotlights those involved, the career prospects of whom are enhanced! These senior political, police and media figures involved however; mostly knew that the unfortunates beginning their 20-30yrs jail terms were innocent!

The rest of this genuinely human drama, illustrates the grim reality endured by Gerry and Giuseppe Conlon, Paul Hill and Annie Maguire as they struggle to exist as innocent victims of the institutional corruption/incompetence, endemic throughout the British establishment of that time; which is the true villian of this hard-hitting and very relevant film. To my mind however the real culprits were not the Prison Guards, Police Officers/Chiefs etc.... pilloried; but the politicians who's failure to take the hard decision's needed; enabled this situation amongst others, to get out of hand in the first place.

While serving in the British Army during this period, I was told that the IRA's total combat strength was less than three hundred men, with the individuals, their ranks, addresses, 'service' records and very much more, all being well known to British Intelligence. Had fifty or so of their best organisers, fundraisers, bombers, snipers and knee-cappers been 'taken out' in the weeks/months following the first bombings; Belfast alone would have been spared more than 20yrs of atrocity and fear, 3,000 deaths, and innumerably more injured/maimed. Similarly, gross travesties of justice such as the incident depicted in this film, would not have occured. I unreservedly recommend this film to any who wish to understand the reality behind the tragic headlines which so often fill our TV News.In The Name Of The Father [DVD] [1994]
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on 30 July 2009
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.
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on 7 November 2004
A gut-wrenching account of the struggle for a fair trial against the might of the British government. A heartbraking story of courage and perserverance in the face of cruel oppression and sectarian injustice.
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on 4 October 2007
released in 1993,and a film i watched in the cinema as an underage kid,this was something else,a passionate film,a film that had character and based on real life events and a film that poked holes at the english,what more could i want,those initial youthful feelings have faded as i have got older but the impact of the film remains.
The film is based on the real; events of four irish people accused of an attack on a pub in guildford where innocents are killed,they are wrongfully imprisoned and made as scapegoats,all of this is indeed true,there are however some tall tales introduced to give the film more edge and bite but that can be forgiven.
The film is a journey of one mans fight to prove his innocence essentially,a struggle to adapt to the hatred spat at him and the fall out for those around him such as family and friends.
The acting is top notch and the film moves along and never glamourises anyone really,a job well done.
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