Violence erupts in north Belfast when the residents of Glenbyrn, a predominantly Protestant suburb, object to schoolgirls walking through their neighbourhood from the Catholic area of Ardoyne to the Holy Cross primary school.

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7 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Louise Doran ...
Karen Norton
Andrew Foott-Stephens ...
The Priest
...
Sarah Norton
Emma Whyte ...
Siobhan McClure
Patrick O'Kane ...
Peter Norton
Cara Kelly ...
Dawn
Emma Aiken ...
Debbie
Zara Turner ...
Ann McClure
Lauren McDonald ...
Aoife McClure
Colum Convey ...
Gerry McClure
Henry Deazley ...
Tony McClure
Amy Peden ...
Holy Cross Girl
George Shane ...
Harry
Fergal McElherron ...
Roy
...
Billy
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Storyline

Violence erupts in north Belfast when the residents of Glenbyrn, a predominantly Protestant suburb, object to schoolgirls walking through their neighbourhood from the Catholic area of Ardoyne to the Holy Cross primary school.

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Drama

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8 November 2003 (Ireland)  »

Also Known As:

Die Mauer des Zorns  »

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Based on true events. See more »

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Fair and powerful representation of the situation
15 November 2003 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

In July 2001, tensions between the loyalist and republican community are simmering with one group feeling under siege as the other expands. When the school term ends things are bad, however in September the protestors are out in force to prevent the Catholic families from walking to school through the Protestant area.

In 2001 I was working in the midlands of England, having been in the UK for about 4 years or so. When this stuff all happened I was constantly asked why people were shouting at children in this way and why `the protestants are just monsters'. These questions were because the media simply cannot report on circumstances, they can only report events, and the events of the time were that school girls were getting yelled at. It was for this reason that I almost dreaded watching this film, the last few films on Northern Ireland I had seen had been either simplified or had been badly slanted in favour of one side or the other.

However this film is very different and very good to watch if you have never lived in Northern Ireland or don't really understand why things happen. The film is balanced, both good sides and bad sides of the community are shown. Unlike the normal `protestants are uncompromising monsters' view that the UK media portray (and I live here now so trust me) this manages to show both sides' point of view. The problem with this is that the film has no answers, but then that is also a fair thing for a film on this subject.

The sense of a loyalist community being under siege is palatable and very well painted. Even if you (like most) condemn the actions that came about, this will help you see why things like this happen in the community. Likewise, the Catholic community, portrayed as saints by the media at the time, are seen balanced and the film does question their actions and motivation for refusing to go round the back of the school. Like one of the characters says `they're using their kids'.

The timing of this film could be questioned – to produce a film that brings out old feelings that have been moved past (if not forgiven or understood) at a time where elections loom and political parties are fighting again, could be seen as insensitive or just naive. However I will concede that would probably never be a good time to make a film such as this.

Overall this is an excellent film simply because it paints both communities fairly – a rare thing in Northern Ireland dramas. The film closes with no captions of closure or peaceful movements forward, only with an image of segregation. One reviewer attacked it for it's pessimism – but, that's how things often are in Northern Ireland, trouble doesn't get solved, it usually just gets contained and controlled.


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