A thriller about an IRA gunman who draws an American family into the crossfire of terrorism. Frankie McGuire is one of the IRA's deadliest assassins. But when he is sent to the U.S. to buy weapons, Frankie is housed with the family of Tom O'Meara, a New York cop who knows nothing about Frankie's real identity. Their surprising friendship, and Tom's growing suspicions, force Frankie to choose between the promise of peace or a lifetime of murder. Written by
Robert Lynch <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The original trailer for the film included a long passage where Tom O'Meara details his sympathy for Frankie the Angel, including his father's murder in front of him when he was a boy and him being targeted by a British agent who has hunted down and killed all of Frankie's IRA cohorts, and then says he wants to bring Frankie into custody unharmed. None of O'Meara's statements appear in the final film. See more »
When Frankie shoots out the car's passenger-side window with the shotgun, a tight grouping of five or six bullet holes also simultaneously appears below the door's window frame. Obviously a pre-fabricated setup that was exposed by a small explosive charge and that was covered by the black paint on the door. See more »
Good Performances, But It Seems A Bit Dated And Too Sympathetic To The IRA
Considering that the era of sectarian violence in Northern Ireland has largely come to an end, and the IRA is rarely heard from anymore (the fight over Northern Ireland's status having been successfully moved by the peace process into the political realm) this movie has a somewhat dated feel even though it's not even 15 years old yet, dealing as it does with a young IRA operative (Brad Pitt) who comes to America to buy weapons for use back home. On his arrival, a sympathetic Irish-American judge arranges to have him stay with a local Irish-American police officer (Harrison Ford), who isn't aware of of the IRA connections. Eventually, the arrangement comes to endanger the lives of the officer's entire family.
I'll grant that the two lead performances were pretty good. Pitt as Francis (or Rory, as he called himself in America) and Ford as O'Meara both seemed to capture their characters quite well. The first hour or so of the movie was rather slow-paced, but it picked up once O'Meara put everything together and figured out what Rory was all about. I was somewhat put off by what I thought was an implicit pro-IRA sentiment in this. At the movie's opening, Francis is sitting at the kitchen table at the age of 8 while his father says grace before a meal, only to have presumably unionist gunmen break into their home and shoot him in cold blood. It seemed to me that this was almost a way of justifying Francis/Rory's later actions, and it's even said at one point that "if I had seen my dad shot dead in front of me ..." Sorry, one can't justify those acts. "I'll do this because you did that," which means that a cycle just gets started that's hard to climb out of. Both IRA and unionist gunmen should have been ashamed to call themselves Catholic and Protestant, their actions having nothing to do with the teachings of Jesus, whom both Catholics and Protestants claim to follow.
Pro-IRA sentiment aside, I still thought this was a rather weak movie, saved somewhat by Pitt and Ford.
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