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Based on Martin McGartland's shocking real life story. Martin is a young lad from west Belfast in the late 1980s who is recruited by the British Police to spy on the IRA. He works his way up the ranks as a volunteer for the IRA whilst feeding information to his British handler and saving lives in the process. Written by
Good film on the life of an IRA informer during the Troubles
Take one young naïve man and place him as an informer (a "Tout") on the IRA to Special Investigations/Police and you have the gist of this film. Set in Belfast, we follow the life of one guy who is in over his head (as they always are) and has to juggle both sides along with his burgeoning family commitments (girlfriend with kid etc).
A generally captivating storyline being based on a true story, and to my surprise didn't glorify any act of violence but rather shows life as a ground patrol man for the IRA in it's most gritty form. Tries to steer clear of cliché and does a fine job.
Acting is fair and most actors fill in their roles very comfortable. Ben Kingsley is wonderful as the Special Investigators sponsor, whilst Jim Sturgess as the informer keeps you on side throughout the film. Rose McGowan as an IRA intelligence officer is the only person who seems out of place but likely was there to add a bit more colour to the surroundings but doesn't take away from the film too much.
Overall, an enjoyable analysis of life in the IRA. Add in a good soundtrack and some able camera work and you have in total a very good film. Good viewing.
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