Amidst a haze of cigarette smoke and uneaten food, the family of Enda Doyle gathers in Dublin for his wake. A university librarian, poet and rascal, he has left behind a trail of unresolved issues, a dysfunctional family, and a disturbing mystery. Enda's dazed widow, Moya, anxiously prepares for the next day's funeral with her still stuck-at-home, twenty-something daughter Medbh lending a loving hand. Moya's desperation to keep her family together and Medbh's sharp tongue provide the backdrop for the arrival of headstrong older sister Catherine from New York with her handsome but awkward boyfriend Tom in tow. They doubt that London-based Johnny, the angry black sheep brother of the family, will even appear at all. Sorting through boxes of Enda's books, the women discover a cache of self-recorded video diaries that might shed light on who Enda Doyle really was and some of the secrets that he was never able to share with them. At the funeral, the daughters see a distraught young woman ... Written by
I caught this film at a festival some time ago and was very impressed. Being a smaller budget movie I was surprised by how well done it was, both production and performance wise. visually the film has a dark appeal that really reflects the theme of a family coping with the loss of a loved one. Director Tamar Simon Hoffs accomplished the challenging task of turning a play into a film, and created a wonderful on screen dynamic while not compromising the integrity of the plays theme. Another aspect of the film that I enjoyed was it's ability to balance dark comedic elements while maintaining a strong message, something many movies fail to achieve. Although it may not have elaborate sets and an abundance of A list Hollywood actors, Red Roses and Petrol is a great film and shouldn't be missed.
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