Michael Collins (1996)

R  |   |  Biography, Drama, Thriller  |  25 October 1996 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 22,684 users   Metascore: 60/100
Reviews: 89 user | 40 critic | 20 from Metacritic.com

Neil Jordan's historical biopic of Irish revolutionary Michael Collins, the man who led a guerrilla war against the UK and who helped negotiate the creation of the Irish Free State.



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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Joe O'Reilly
Richard Ingram ...
British Officer
John Kenny ...
Ronan McCairbre ...
Thomas Clarke (as Ger O'Leary)
James Connolly (as Michael Dwyer)
Martin Murphy ...
Gary Whelan ...
Ned Broy


Neil Jordan's depiction of the controversial life and death of Michael Collins, the "Lion of Ireland", who led the IRA against the UK and helped found the Irish Free State in 1922. Written by Dawn M. Barclift

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Ireland, 1916. His dreams inspired hope. His words inspired passion. His courage forged a nation's destiny. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

25 October 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El precio de la libertad  »

Box Office


$28,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$187,052 (USA) (11 October 1996)


$11,030,963 (USA) (28 February 1997)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


John Boorman's short segment from Lumière and Company (1995) was filmed on the set of this movie (most precisely the location used for the Easter Rising sequence) and features actors Liam Neeson, Aidan Quinn, Stephen Rea and Alan Rickman. See more »


One of the sailing vessels pictured in the background as Collins, Boland, and Kitty Kiernan walk along the pier in the Dun Laoghaire Harbour is a Dublin Bay Sailing Club Mermaid. This class of 3-man racing dinghy was designed in 1932, 9 years after Collins' death. See more »


[first lines]
Joe O'Reilly: [dictating a letter] You've got to think of him the way he was... He was what the times demanded. And life without him seems impossible. But he's dead. And life is possible. He made it possible.
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Crazy Credits

Opening scroll: At the turn of the century Britian was the foremost world power and the British Empire stretched over two-thirds of the globe. Despite the extent of its power its most troublesome colony had always been the one closest to it, Ireland For seven hundred years Britain's rule over Ireland had been resisted by attempts at rebellion and revolution, all of which ended in failure. Then, in 1916, a rebellion began, to be followed by a guerilla war which would change the nature of that rule forever. The mastermind behind that war was Michael Collins. His life and death defined the period, in its triumph, terror and tragedy. This is his story. See more »


Featured in The 69th Annual Academy Awards (1997) See more »


Civil War
Performed by Sinéad O'Connor
Courtesy of Chrysalis Records UK
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User Reviews

A great movie
4 September 2006 | by (Sweden) – See all my reviews

This movie is an excellent portrayal of the brutal and often non-conventional Irish freedom struggle. The movie has several great strengths. The biggest strength is Liam Neeson in his tour-de-force. His acting in this movie is as good as it gets. His personality changes subtly throughout the movie, becoming increasingly affected by the changes of the world around him. The supporting cast is also excellent, with Rickman in one of his best roles.

Cinematography is very nice, capturing everything from the hopelessness of the defeats in the ashy cities to the beauty of the Irish landscapes. The pacing is very good as well.

If you saw this movie with no opinion on the Irish history, you will have one when you leave the theater. This shows to me how powerful this movie is. After all, Michael Collin's tactics were not pretty, everything from car-bombings to mob-style executions. Yet we still care for him, we want him to succeed, even if he himself isn't sure he wants to.

Without it's politics, this movie is still excellent. It's a great piece of movie-making, it's involving, sad, funny and sometimes tense. One of the movies I consider classic.

31 of 43 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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