7.6/10
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129 user 99 critic

Bloody Sunday (2002)

A dramatization of the Irish civil rights protest march and subsequent massacre by British troops on January 30, 1972.

Director:

Paul Greengrass

Writer:

Paul Greengrass
19 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Nesbitt ... Ivan Cooper
Allan Gildea ... Kevin McCorry
Gerard Crossan Gerard Crossan ... Eamonn McCann
Mary Moulds ... Bernadette Devlin
Carmel McCallion Carmel McCallion ... Bridget Bond (as Carmel Mccallion)
Tim Pigott-Smith ... Maj. Gen. Ford
Nicholas Farrell ... Brig. Maclellan
Christopher Villiers ... Maj. Steele (as Chris Villiers)
James Hewitt James Hewitt ... Col. Tugwell
Declan Duddy Declan Duddy ... Gerry Donaghy
Edel Frazer Edel Frazer ... Gerry's Girl
Joanne Lindsay Joanne Lindsay ... Mary Donaghy
Mike Edwards Mike Edwards ... Soldier 027
Gerry Hammond Gerry Hammond ... Para F
Jason Stammers Jason Stammers ... Para G
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Storyline

Documentary-style drama showing the events that led up to the tragic incident on January 30, 1972 in the Northern Ireland town of Derry when a protest march led by civil rights activist Ivan Cooper was fired upon by British troops, killing 13 protesters and wounding 14 more. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Ireland

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 April 2002 (Portugal) See more »

Also Known As:

Domingo Sangrento See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

GBP2,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$29,419, 6 October 2002

Gross USA:

$773,228

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,758,689
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Three days after this movie's UK television broadcast, Sunday (2002) aired on TV, which chronicled the same event from an alternate perspective. See more »

Goofs

Major Steel has the shoulder epaulet of a lieutenant colonel (a crown above a pip) not a major, (just a crown). See more »

Quotes

Ivan Cooper: I just want to say this to the British Government... You know what you've just done, don't you? You've destroyed the civil rights movement, and you've given the IRA the biggest victory it will ever have. All over this city tonight, young men... boys will be joining the IRA, and you will reap a whirlwind.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Near the end of the end credits, the names of the dead and wounded of Bloody Sunday are listed. See more »

Connections

Featured in The 2003 IFP Independent Spirit Awards (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Sunday Bloody Sunday
Performed by U2
Written by U2
Published by Universal Music Publishing International BV
Except:
Blue Mountain Music LTD (UK), Mother Music (Ireland)
Courtesy of Universal Island Records LTD
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

One day of "the troubles" packs a universal wallop.
30 November 2002 | by noraleeSee all my reviews

"Bloody Sunday" is a very startling, cinema-verite recreation of a very specific date (January 30, 1972), in a very specific place (Derry, Northern Ireland) of an event that for the Irish became "our Sharpeville."

But for an American audience with no benefit of subtitles for the brogues and working class Brit accents, no explanations outside of eventual context for lingo and slang (it took me awhile to keep track of "provos" vs "paras"), the quasi-documentary, in-your-face approach takes on a tragic universality.

It could be part of a Cassandra trilogy with `Black Hawk Down' and `No Man's Land' about why military should not be in charge in urban strife, whether as "peacekeepers" or in civil wars or regime changes, no matter how heinous the regime to be changed. A lesson for the Baghdad invasion planners?

Cities are complicated social ecologies, and the film shows a great diversity of attitudes and pressures on all sides, managing to be both clinical in meticulous detail and visceral in shocking impact. The film is probably not objective about the British (I don't think it's a coincidence that the imperious Brit "observer" who takes repugnant charge is played by Tim Pigott-Smith who was a similar colonialist in `The Jewel in the Crown.") A central universal image becomes the awesome power of rock-throwing, unemployed teen-age boys to spark war.

The liberals in the middle, clinging to dreams of Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and fair community relations, are morally destroyed over the course of a few hours and the extremists with guns on both sides feed on each other in perpetual destruction like the ouroboros image of the snake eating itself. I kept feeling I missed the exact flash point in a wandering attention moment and wanted to immediately re-watch it to see if I could track the gotcha! moment when escalation could have been prevented, so I look forward to this being available on video tape.

But the film does clearly show that it was attitudes that created the violent outcome and consequent government non-investigation, as we see in so many police situations. Once soldiers enter a city it is a police situation with all those complexities.

I know James Nesbitt primarily from frothy Irish comedies, like `BallykissAngel,' so his staggering portrayal of the M.P. in the middle is a revelation, as he goes from planning a civil rights march to pleading with his girlfriend to physical heroism to a break-down in shock.

The version of the titular U2 song played out at the end, running well past the credits finish, is a moving, live, passionate audience sing-along where Bono shouts out other locales that have experienced similar situations to emphasize the universality.


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