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In the Name of the Father (1993)

A man's coerced confession to an IRA bombing he did not commit results in the imprisonment of his father as well. An English lawyer fights to free them.



(autobiographical book "Proved Innocent"), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Top Rated Movies #187 | Nominated for 7 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 33 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Alison Crosbie ...
Girl in Pub
Philip King ...
Guildford Soldier
Nye Heron ...
IRA Man 1
Paul Warriner ...
Julian Walsh ...
Stuart Wolfenden ...
Soldier (as Stuart Wolvenden)
Jo Connor ...
Bin Lady
Karen Carlisle ...
Female Rioter
Seamus Moran ...
IRA Man 2
Billy Byrne ...
IRA Man 3


A small time thief from Belfast, Gerry Conlon, is falsely implicated in the IRA bombing of a pub that kills several people while he is in London. Bullied by the British police, he and four of his friends are coerced into confessing their guilt. Gerry's father and other relatives in London are also implicated in the crime. He spends 15 years in prison with his father trying to prove his innocence with the help of a British attorney, Gareth Peirce. Based on a true story. Written by Liza Esser <essereli@student.msu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Falsely accused. Wrongly imprisoned. He fought for justice to clear his father's name. See more »


Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and politically-geneRated violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

25 February 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

En el nombre del padre  »


Box Office


$13,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$40,700,000, 31 December 1994
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Despite playing father and son, Pete Postlethwaite was only 11 years older than Daniel Day-Lewis. See more »


In in Belfast apartment, as Mr. Conlon is prepares to go to London to help Gerry, he throws some CDs in his case. See more »


Gerry Conlon: What I remember most about my childhood is holding your hand. My wee hand in your big hand, and the smell of tobacco. I remember, I could smell the tobacco in the palm of your hand. When I want to feel happy, I try to remember the smell of tobacco.
Giuseppe Conlon: Hold my hand.
See more »


Featured in 1994 MTV Video Music Awards (1994) See more »


Happy Birthday
Written by Patty S. Hill (as Patty Hill) and Mildred J. Hill (as Mildred Hill)
Published by Keith Prowse Music Publishing Co. Ltd.
See more »

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User Reviews

A Very Sharp Film
25 July 1999 | by See all my reviews

What a clever film this was. Quite modest yet remarkably entertaining. Instead of blaring political bias, viewers are treated to a compassionate human drama without the preachings and irritating banter of most other "social dramas" (Dog Day Afternoon, All the President's Men, Norma Rae). It's shameful that this film didn't receive at least two academy awards, despite it having been nominated for 7. Now considering that this was the same year that Schindler's List and The Piano, two outstanding dramas, were released, it isnt surprising nor unreasonable that they beat In the Name of the Father for many of the awards.

The acting in this film is terrific. Lewis is low key and quite effective as the petty Irish thief Gerry Conlon. Pete Postlethwaite is spectacular as Gerry's father Guiseppe (certainly better than oscar winner tommy lee jones was in the fugitive). Emma Thompson's portrayal of attorney Gareth Pierce received much acclaim, and properly so. Beatie Edney, who had a small part as a wrongfully accused British teenage hippie, was so enamoring that its a wonder we don't see more of her.

Of course much of this film is exagerrated and perhaps fabricated for the purposes of entertainment (as all movies which are "based on a true story" tend to be) but it's so finely done that it doesn't seem to matter. Some terrific scenes include the beginning, when Gerry and his friends are chased by British soldiers after being mistaken for IRA snipers, the trial in London, the prison scenes (which expose the loneliness and honesty of the characters rather than the crude violence and gang rapes of so many other pathetic prison movies), and of course the powerful ending, where the marvelous dramatic talents of all the actors are evinced in a final crescendo. Be sure to see this film if you haven't, it will definitely stir your emotions and renew your faith in the human spirit. And for those who eschew political films, give it a try anyways, the acting and craftiness outweigh the civic themes.

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