6.8/10
1,790
35 user 13 critic

Divorcing Jack (1998)

Black romantic comedy set around the troubled "peace process" and its effect on a cynical Belfast hack.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
Reviews

Watch Now

With Prime Video

WATCH NOW
ON DISC
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Tom Jones (1963)
Adventure | Comedy | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

The romantic and chivalrous adventures of adopted bastard Tom Jones in 18th century England.

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Albert Finney, Susannah York, Hugh Griffith
Cheeky (2003)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Consumed with sadness after the death of his wife and subsequent rejection from his son, a widower, at the urging of his friends, opts to appear on a vulgar, wildly popular game show (for ... See full summary »

Director: David Thewlis
Stars: David Thewlis, Lisa Gorman, Sean Ward
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Criminal psychiatrist, Jake Nyman is taking a much needed vacation from responsibility. An experimental road trip during which ever decision will be made on a flip of a coin. Meanwhile, ... See full summary »

Director: Paul Chart
Stars: Amanda Plummer, Robert Forster, David Thewlis
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Harold Smith, a quiet middle-aged Englishman becomes an instant celebrity when he suddenly starts exhibiting psychic and telekinetic powers. After he is arrested for accidentally killing ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Hewitt
Stars: Tom Courtenay, Michael Legge, Laura Fraser
Biography | Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A Western retelling the tale of the Shoot-out at the OK Corral.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Henry Fonda, Linda Darnell, Victor Mature
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Lee Cooper
...
Cow Pat Keegan
...
Margaret
...
Charles Parker
Laine Megaw ...
Patricia Starkey
...
Taxi Driver
Kitty Aldridge ...
Agnes Brinn
...
Michael Brinn
Adam Black ...
Young Starkey
Simon Magill ...
Starkey's Brother
George Shane ...
Woods
Alan McKee ...
Mouse
Brian Devlin ...
Dans' work mate
Sean Caffrey ...
Joe
Edit

Storyline

A married drunk hooks up with the ex-girlfriend of a vicious local criminal. He gets booted out of home for his infidelity, has a murderer on his tail, and must try to write the story of his life in order to save his journalism job. He gets help from a stripper dressed as a nun and goes undercover dressed as Shaggy from Scooby Doo. He finds a drinking buddy in an American fellow journalist. Written by K. Wedgwood

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Thriller | Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 October 1998 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Elválni Jacktől  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£121,394 (UK) (2 October 1998)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The role of Starkey was originally offered to Robert Carlyle, but he had to drop out when the shoot dates were changed and he became unavailable. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dan: [voiceover] When I was 8 years old, I woke up in the middle of the night and found my brother pissing on my typewriter. I decided then and there that there was something wonderful about alcohol.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the credits roll the taxi driver can be heard screaming her catchphrase: "Fuck away off and die!" See more »

Connections

References Doctor Zhivago (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

That Old Familiar Feeling
Written by Mike Flowers
Performed by The Nolans
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A black comedy with a message; highly underrated
19 August 2006 | by (Israel) – See all my reviews

A vastly underrated film that was practically ignored by both critics and viewers, Divorcing Jack is a highly enjoyable, and often powerful, film with a terrific cast and a very clever title that keeps you interested to the last minute. It's good to see David Thewlis, one of the finest British actors of his generation, play the lead in a British film – as he did in his prime, and not a side character in Hollywoodian films like Harry Potter. His performance in Divorcing Jack isn't quite as remarkable as the one he gave five years before in Naked but it's fantastic by its own right, and just like in Naked Thewlis creates an anti-hero that is egoistic, weak, detestable, and entirely believable; if you're looking for a noble hero to sacrifice himself for the greater good because that's the right thing to do, look elsewhere. Dan Starkey cares for himself and makes excuses for nobody; and that makes him a protagonist you can relate to.

There are some neat surprises in the supporting cast: Australian born Rachel Griffiths – AKA Brenda Chenowith of HBO's terrific Six Feet Under – who was practically anonymous in 1998, is terrific as Thewlis' prostitute-in-nun's-clothing sidekick, and supplies some of the film's funniest moments. Jason Isaacs, who, like Thewlis, has recently familiarized himself with American audiences through the Harry Potter movies, in bone-chillingly excellent in the lead villain role. The beautiful Laura Fraser (who had recently made a career for herself in Hollywood with supporting roles in movies like Titus, Vanilla Sky, and A Knight's Tale; but anyone who happened to catch the excellent BBC mini-series Neverwhere will surely remember her as the charming Door) has a part that's brief but unforgettable. American TV regular Richard Grant is lovely and believable as the visiting reporter from the US who came to cover the upcoming elections but is more interested in learning about the difference between the different types of scotch. And experienced British actor Robert Lindsay steals the show as the dodgy candidate. Finally, a brief but hilarious cameo from the charming Bronagh Gallagher (The Commitments) as a taxi driver.

The film's messages about the horrors and idiocy of war and particularly the Irish civil war are familiar and would have been corny in a straight drama, but as in Catch-22 and other classic black comedies, the absurd humor of the film makes it powerful. If you take any of the two aspects of the film – comedic or political – and separate it from the other, maybe it really isn't all that good. Perhaps that's why it failed to find its audience in the US and most of Europe. Myself, I've lived my entire life in Israel, and am familiar with a war between two neighboring factions that always seems on the brink of resolution just before the situation explodes again, and that has its highest price in the innocent lives of people on both sides who just want to be left alone in peace, while the leaders of both peoples carry on their senseless warmongering. Divorcing Jack has a simplistic view of the situation but it's important to make it heard. The ending is inevitable and almost predictable, yet it's the only proper ending this story could possibly have. Divorcing Jack is highly recommended; it's neither a romantic comedy nor a straight thriller, but it's a good and powerful film to enjoy and to think about.


5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?