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Some Mother's Son (1996)

R  |   |  Drama, History  |  25 December 1996 (USA)
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Based on the true story of the 1981 hunger strike in a British prison, in which IRA prisoner Bobby Sands led a protest against the treatment of IRA prisoners as criminals rather than as ... See full summary »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Annie Higgins
Gerard Quigley
Frank Higgins
Danny Boyle
Alice Quigley
Fr. Daly
Dan Gordon ...
Inspector McPeake
Grainne Delany ...
Theresa Higgins
Ciarán Fitzgerald ...
Liam Quigley
Robert Lang ...
Government Minister
Young Turk


Based on the true story of the 1981 hunger strike in a British prison, in which IRA prisoner Bobby Sands led a protest against the treatment of IRA prisoners as criminals rather than as prisoners of war. The film focuses on the mothers of two of the strikers, and their struggle to save the lives of their sons. Written by Alexander Lum <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Between love and loyalty... Between life and death... Lies a choice no mother should have to make.


Drama | History

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some political violence and suffering | See all certifications »






Release Date:

25 December 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sons and Warriors  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$114,309 (USA) (27 December 1996)


$608,032 (USA) (7 February 1997)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Character actor Robert Lang was reunited on screen in this film opposite Helen Mirren nearly 25 years after portraying her father in Savage Messiah (1972) by Ken Russell. See more »


Outside the prison you can clearly see an Austin Metro Mk2 which was not released till late 1984. This film is based in 1981. See more »


Farnsworth: We want to make the prisons an asset, not a liability. It is in the prisons that we will break the backs of the IRA.
See more »


Version of The Rising of the Moon (2002) See more »


Messiah: All We Like Sheep
Composed by George Frideric Handel
Performed by RIAS Chamber Chorus and Sinfonietta
Courtesy of LaserLight Digital
By Arrangement with Source/Q
See more »

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User Reviews

Incredibly poignant, historically authentic and brilliantly acted!
25 February 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

While it is difficult to separate oneself from the politics of "the troubles" I think its important to keep in mind that this is a film, not a documentary. Its goal is to be historically authentic, not accurate. The message is one that speaks to mothers on all sides of the political divide. I think that one of the reviewers unfortunately missed the point of the movie which is featured in the title.

As a film this is an incredibly moving portrait of the horror, sacrifice and absurdity of war. The cast is outstanding; Helen Mirren is simply stunning, Fionnula Flanagan gives a powerful performance, Aidan Gillen is stirring as Helen Mirren's son and Bobby Sands' cell mate and finally John Lynch portrays the role of Bobby Sands quite fairly. The writers and director Terry George and Jim Sheridan have done an outstanding job writing and filming a story that transcends conflict and speaks to humanity we all share. While it shows the injustice of the position from which many of the North Ireland Catholics faced (and therein lies its political slant) the title firmly roots this film as so much more. I highly recommend this film for its historical authenticity and the brilliant performance by Helen Mirren.

8 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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