Red Roses and Petrol (2003) - Plot Summary Poster

Plot Summary

  • 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 from the university who was rumored to be having an affair with Enda. They're stunned that she would show up so brazenly at a family gathering for the deceased Enda. Returning home, they find Johnny emerging from the shower after an impromptu tryst. A brilliant but emotionally wounded slacker, Johnny brings the clan to the edge of violence with his biting and sarcastic recall of the family's long buried memories. His confrontational behavior and bitter recollection of life with their father incite all of them into what can only be called unchecked family therapy. Throughout the ensuing arguments, which reach a fevered pitch as the family becomes inebriated waiting for guests to arrive for the wake, Enda Doyle is further revealed as the powerful and ambiguous force that he was. Finally, Catherine cannot contain herself and accuses Moya of being blind to her husband's infidelity and, by extension, inflicting great pain on herself and her children. In a surprising twist, Enda's own videotapes give the family the answers they returned home to find. Enda, the poet, could not express his feelings for his family in words, yet unfailingly brought Moya a dozen red roses with the petrol he purchased for his lawnmower every Saturday. This mixture represents both the fire and romance that made up his character.

    - Written by Anonymous
  • A dysfunctional Irish family gathers after the death of their patriarch.

    - Written by Anonymous


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