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"Six Shooter" is the debut written/directed film by playwright Martin
McDonagh and now I want to see more of his work.
This film is suffused with death, human and animal; we see or hear about intentional deaths - murder and suicide--, natural deaths --by illness or mysterious causes, accidental deaths, and maybe a few I missed in passing.
Each character deals with death in a different way, from the psychotic to tearful grief to quiet suffering to violent reactions, and the actors portray each fully.
While Brendan Gleeson is the central widower trying to make sense of all these observations of death for his own coping mechanisms, the film is stolen by a motormouth Rúaidhrí Conroy as the most annoying guy to ever be on public transport. He non-stop goes from cheerful to entertaining to manipulative to scary and beyond.
While it does go a bit over the top, the cinematography and settings always ground it in grim reality, with a brief excursion into magic realism.
The Irish scenery outside the railway car windows does look very pretty, in contrast to what's going on inside.
I viewed this film as part of a commercial screening of Oscar nominated shorts.
McDonagh is a brilliant story teller and fully deserves his Tony nominations and his Olivier Award for Best Play (The Pillowman). His critics have questioned his use of casual cruelty as a dramatic device, although he always grounds violence in a social context or connects sadism to particular characters' proclivities. This film is beautifully acted by Brendon Gleeson and especially Rúaidhrí Conroy, sharply photographed, and well directed by McDonagh himself. For technique alone it is Oscar-worthy. But the whole piece strikes me as an absurdist joke with insufficient resonance. This is a mélange of destructions, an indulgence in violence that reduces and parodies McDonagh's better scripts.
As far as short films go, this is near the top of the list. McDonagh
(formerly a playwright, here making his film debut) is a master
craftsman, able to play several levels at the same time. "Six Shooter"
is shocking, heartbreaking and very funny, often simultaneously. The
story, in a nutshell, revolves around four people, each suffering a
very recent death in their families. As they each deal with the loss in
very different ways, they collide with each other, sometimes with
words, sometimes with more.
The cast is uniformly excellent, especially Brendan Gleeson as the sad-eyed protagonist and Rúaidhrí Conroy as a ticking time-bomb of a kid. McDonagh's pitch-perfect writing - while not approaching the near-apocalyptic absurdity of plays like "The Lieutenant of Inishmore" - is appropriately bleak. His direction is also assured, showing him to be a filmmaker to watch in coming years.
"Six Shooter" is available on iTunes for two dollars. If you can, buy it. It's truly a great work of modern cinema.
They showed this on RTE television recently and I watched out of curiosity, it turned out to be much better than expected... Fantastic acting, superb casting and a fabulously brilliant and disturbing story. It's great to see the quality of Irish short films returning to something worthy of an Oscar nomination compared to some of the nonsense perpetrated throughout the past couple of years. Martin Mc Donagh is a quality playwright and this first foray into the world of movie making is a wonderful success to say the least. It's also fantastic to see the raw talent of Ruaidhri Conroy back on screen and with none other than Brendan Gleeson, the master! It's entirely deserving of it's Oscar nomination, fingers crossed for the lads. Thoroughly recommended!!!!
I just found this flicking through channels and it turned out to be pretty good. seeing Brendan Gleeson kept my attention for the first few minutes, but the story is pretty shocking stuff. I liked the camera-work on the train which, despite it being filmed on a small Irish train carriage) doesn't make it feel cramped. The boys character in it is great. Even though i like Gleeson, it's Ruadhri Conroy's character that kept me watching more than anyone else. It manages to pack in a fair few unexpected turns into its half hour length, and some of it made me surprised it was aired at all. The only other guy i recognized (of the cast of about 5) was David Wilmot from intermission. Anyway for a debut this is very good and it's worth seeing. Hopefully he'll be doing something else soon
Finally saw this online and wondering what all the fuss is about. Almost whimsical, I couldn't quite believe the darkness at the centre of the story. There are a couple of good lines and the performances are solid Rory Conroy being the best. Martin McDonagh is a very talented playwright, but on this evidence his directing is a little flat. Film looks and sounds flat too. What struck me about it was the superficiality of it all, the cynicism. However it does have some funny moments and moves along at a brisk pace. I'm not surprised it was looked on so favourably by the academy, picking up an Oscar for Best Short Film it has hip written all over it. And it is one of the better short Irish films I've seen, complete with twists and double twists and a lot of flippant dialogue. McDonagh is planning a gangster film with Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson. I'll pay money to see that. He obviously wants to be the Celtic Scorsese. High point a cow explodes. Low point rather tasteless plot line about a baby's death. Brendan Gleeson is in this film.
First thing I have got to say, is that I am a huge fan of Martin
McDonaghs stage plays. Six-Shooter tells the tale of a recently
bereaved man who finds himself in the same carriage as a mourning
couple and a young psycho. The next half an hour presents all McDonaghs
famous trademarks which have made him the the toast of the Theatre
This short film will appeal to two types of people. The first is any person who loves their action and blood and guts. It will also appeal to McDonagh's legions of Theatre fans (like myself). And for these two audiences markets the film is successful. For the person that loves there blood, there is no shortage of blood and there is Ruaidhri Conroy's callous performance as the young Psycho. For his legion of theatre fans there is the morality tale that involves all the characters and the wonderful writing and grotesque characters that has endeared McDonagh to my heart.
I would love to write more but i do not want to spoil it for any film fans that do not like theatre but have yet to experience the wonderful creative mind of Martin McDonagh
Your appreciation of SIX SHOOTER, a 30 minute Irish short by IN BRUGES
director Martin McDonagh, largely depends on your tolerance for black
comedy. I thought myself a fan of it, but after some of the subject
matter played for laughs here - including cot death - I'm not so sure.
Much of the material left me cold.
Looks-wise, it's certainly a professional production, pitched just right and utilising a moving train carriage as an effective backdrop to the ongoing events. Brendan Gleeson is as good as ever he's been playing Donnelly, a grieving husband encountering some decidedly odd situations on board what should be an uneventful train journey. Unfortunately, much of the film revolves around Ruaidhri Conroy's ne'er-do-well Kid, and I found him so unpleasant and repulsive that much of my enjoyment was taken away as a result.
Still, the acting is strong all around, the use of stark violence is effective and despite everything this feature comes away with a broad dash of Irish charm which works in its favour.
The London-born playwright of Irish parents,Martin McDonagh,returns to the land of his fathers for his movie debut,and shows considerable promise and talent as a filmmaker.The film has an excellent performance from the well-known Brendan Gleeson and an even better one from the relatively unknown Ruaiduri Conroy as the main protagonists.As with all black comedy,it is mainly about the subject of death and it's various causes and impacts it has on various individuals.The potential poor taste the story offers is easily offset by fine photography,a witty script,convincing characterisation and well executed plot twists.The foul language could be too much for some,but it is to be hoped that on this showing at least,McDonagh will concentrate on film-making in the future equally as much as his theatre work.
So this was nominated for and won the Academy Award for Live Action
Short Film. So intriguing how they done it. Many spend a fortune to get
one of those little Oscars, so what was so good about this low budget
short movie? We have here 30 mins of mostly three sets of people with
some tragedy in their lives which they reveal in one way or the others.
Brendan Gleeson is great as always as a brooding big guy, but this time with a burden to carry as big as a rock. On the other hand, the film is stolen by Rúaidhrí Conroy who plays a cold-hearted and motor mouthed young man with a dark secret.
It's mostly about the conversations between the characters. There is actually very little "live action". Some dark humour too.
Personally, I wasn't blown away by it. I don't know who the other nominees were but surely there were better out there.
Not a bad little short story movie, but nothing special in it that will want you to revisit this again.
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