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Francie and Joe live the usual playful, fantasy filled childhoods of normal boys. However, with a violent, alcoholic father and a manic depressive, suicidal mother the pressure on Francie to grow up are immense. When his mother eventually commits suicide and Joe goes off to boarding school, Francie sinks ever deeper into paranoia directed mainly against Mrs. Nugent, a nasty neighbor, and fantasy where he has visions of the Virgin Mary. After his father dies Fancie's condition worsens, his behavior becomes more bizarre and erratic culminating in the extremely bloody murder of Mrs. Nugent whom he holds responsible for all the wrongs visited upon him. The authorities arrest Francie and commit him to an asylum in an attempt to cure him. Written by
Mark Smith <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I'd be lying if I claimed that the original reason I saw this wasn't anything as simple and basic as curiosity... the plot simply sounds so bizarre that one can't help but wonder about the movie itself. The movie is a wonderful mix of surrealism, drama and black comedy. As another reviewer points out, the accents may make the dialog a little hard to make out... I was fortunate enough to have subtitles(as any Dane will tell you, we get subtitles on everything that is presented to us on a screen), but I think most anyone who has a good enough grasp on the English language(and a good ear wouldn't hurt) will be able to understand, at the very least, enough of it to follow what's going on. The film is quite disturbing... it's told by a psychotic, and everything is seen from his point of view, making the line between truth and fantasy blur. The narrative is impressive, underplaying some scenes to great effect. The plot is interesting. The pacing is a tad uneven... while most of the film moves as it should, not too fast nor too slow, there are parts where it seems to come to a complete halt. Luckily, these parts are few and far between. The characters are well-written and credible. They are also all competently portrayed. The acting... wow. What can I say? Eamonn Owens is nothing short of an artist. As you watch the film(which I hope you will), observe his eyes... look into them, as he looks around menacingly, and tell me that you don't feel fear. Pure fear. One is reminded of Donald Pleasence's marvelous monologue about Michael Myers' eyes(in Halloween, for the uninitiated). That stare... if I ever met Owens in real life, I doubt I'd dare look him in the eye. Even more impressively, this was his debut performance. I'll have to watch more of his movies, to see if he can pull off other roles as well, but he certainly nailed this one. Stephen Rea was great... I've seen him in nothing else, but I could recognize his face from the trailers for V for Vendetta, a movie I'm looking forward to(even more now that I know he will grace the film with what is sure to be just as astounding a performance as he gave here), even though I'm sure it won't live up to Alan Moore's graphic novel. Sinéad O'Connor was a blast(and seemed to be having one, as well) as Our Lady. I haven't been able to find out who portrayed the main character as an adult, but let me tell you, his voice acting is grand. The narration definitely adds to the film, both in use and in acting. The writing is great. The whole film is highly entertaining and very poignant. This should be seen by just about anyone who can live with(and more importantly, understand) the language and take the disturbing nature of the film. I recommend this to anyone who is afraid of neither accents nor the disturbing images contained herein. Very funny and quite unsettling. 8/10
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