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Set in Belfast in 1972, the politically naïve Bernie is trying to bring up a normal family in less than normal surroundings. Her best friend is accidentally shot dead by the IRA, and her neighbours are constantly raided by the army. In this climate of fear and confusion, she dares to stand up and condemn the killings. Criticising both factions equally, her public call for a ceasefire is interpreted by many as an attack against the IRA, and as her fledgling peace movement takes momentum, she and her family are placed in the frontline. Written by
I saw this at the 1998 Montreal Film Festival and found it a moving and challenging film on the complexities of personal and political response to a longstanding and divisive issue. Well acted and cinematographed, this film added a dimension that has been rarely touched upon in other depictions of the "troubles in Northern Ireland." It compliments "Every Mother's Son" and "In the Name of the Father" with a moving story of the long-lasting and indiscriminate effects of violence and an attempt to question its limits as a political strategy. This is not a simplistic film, and its power comes from the depth of its critique of all the players in this ongoing political struggle.
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