In the Name of the Father
Directed by Jim Sheridan
Cornerhouse, 23 March 2011
The film tells the story of Gerry Conlon, one of the Guildford Four.
It is a vivid, effective account, graced by some fine performances, notably from Daniel Day-Lewis as Gerry and the late Pete Postlethwaite as his father Giuseppe.
Jim Sheridan’s inventiveness as a director comes into its own in his depiction of riots: street riots, commotions in court, prison riots. Sure he’s your man if you want to film a riot.
There are some nice touches of Irish Catholic humour and behaviour, which anyone who’s been blessed with a grandmother who’s had a portrait of the Pope above her mantle-piece will appreciate. As a for instance, Gerry is told by his mother to wear his Sunday best when he appears in court.
Whatever faults the film has – there’s an occasional superficiality – are due to the genre and the limitations of the medium withal. You cannot expect all the detail of a judicial enquiry, now can you?
A fine film.