A young American man joins the IRA in Ireland but soon finds out that he is being used for political purposes and propaganda.




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Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Flaherty
Seamus Flaherty
Niall O'Brien ...
Emmet Donovan
John Russell
The Farmer
Frank Grimes ...
Tony Coyle
Elizabeth Begley ...
Mrs. Cochran
Finbar Donovan
J.G. Devlin ...
Sean Tweeny
Joe Dowling ...
Aiden Grennell ...
Joe McPartland ...
Joe McDermott
Des Cave ...
Kevin McCann (as Desmond Cave)


Idealistic Vietnam veteran Michael Flaherty (Wasson), enthralled by the stories told to him by his grandfather (Hayden) and disillusioned by the lack of a clear cut cause in Vietnam, leaves his comfortable life in a Detroit suburb and goes to Ireland to fight for the IRA, only to discover that nothing is ever clear cut. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A cause he believed in but did not understand. In a country he loved but did not know.


R | See all certifications »





Release Date:

11 June 1981 (Netherlands)  »

Also Known As:

Michael  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Broken English
Written by Marianne Faithfull, Barry Reynolds, Joe Maverty, Steve York,
& Terry Stannard
Performed by Marianne Faithfull
Courtesy of Island Records
See more »

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User Reviews

A lost treasure!
3 August 2004 | by (Sacramento, CA) – See all my reviews

Years ago I was hanging out with friends at my house. Out of boredom, we turned on the TV to our one cable channel (I told you it was years ago!) and saw this movie. The story caught our interest. Craig Wasson plays a Vietnam veteran who goes to Northern Ireland and joins the IRA. Seems that his uncle Seamus (Sterling Hayden) told stories of about how he fought heroically for the IRA in the old days. Craig was disillusioned by his experience in Vietnam, and decides to redeem himself by fighting for a cause where the good guys (the IRA) are obviously in the right and the bad guys (the British) are obviously in the wrong. But when he gets to Northern Ireland, he finds more moral murkiness and disillusionment. The decades of warfare have made everybody either crazy, cynical, devoid of hope, or some combination of these. In over his head, he winds up being a pawn in a deadly game between the IRA and British Army. We were all amazed at what a *great* movie it was. Will it ever get released on DVD?

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