6 user

Asylum (2003)

Fleeing persecution and torture in northern Iraq, three young Kurds, Mahmoud, Rezghar and Saman, smuggle themselves into Britain aboard a freight train. Arriving in London they register for... See full summary »


Nigel Barker
1 win. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Gary Condés ... Officer Reid (as Gary Condes)
Tony Resta ... Ali Shamal
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Frank Boyce Frank Boyce ... Cynic
David Bradley ... Father Michael
Luke F Dejahang ... Rezghar Farman (as Fuman Dar)
Nabil Elouahabi ... Mahmoud Nasdar
Mark Mooney Mark Mooney ... John Hourihane
Dina Mousawi Dina Mousawi ... Lana Baram
James Petherick James Petherick ... Father Thomas
Jake Seal Jake Seal ... Mark
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Fleeing persecution and torture in northern Iraq, three young Kurds, Mahmoud, Rezghar and Saman, smuggle themselves into Britain aboard a freight train. Arriving in London they register for asylum but soon experience the first blast of bureaucracy, as their papers are lost in the system. When Saman is detained in prison and the police attempt to arrest Rezghar, he flees and hides in a church where Father Michael is leading a service. So begins a lengthy standoff with the police and immigration officers as the priest offers sanctuary to both Rezghar and Mahmoud and the church becomes the focus of intense media attention. With Father Michael under siege from armed police, the Press, racist neighbors and his own superiors, tension mounts until something - or someone - threatens to break. Nigel Roffe-Barker's poignant social drama looks beyond politics to the desperate human stories behind the newspaper headlines. Boasting heartbreaking performances from Dar, Bradley and former EastEnders... Written by Nigel Roffe-Barker

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Drama | Romance | War


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David Bradley's first acting credit since 1989. See more »

User Reviews

very moving movie that raises serious issues
21 February 2009 | by mjtracSee all my reviews

(I saw this movie under its American release name, The Refuge.)

I am saddened to see how many people either did not appreciate this movie or did not want to appreciate this movie.

It is a very moving film, very well acted by the three central characters. Although it is about two Kurdish refugees who take refuge in a church, the central character is the priest who turns from a mouse to a lion in dealing with the challenges he confronts as a result of his willingness to offer refuge. We are also presented with a look into the British civil service bureaucracy, the Catholic church bureaucracy, and the Kurdish immigrant community in London.

I've heard for years about the suffering of the Kurds, but this brought it home. They are not only discriminated against, they are discriminated against by people who don't even know who they are.

There is really no reason, beyond anti-immigrant sentiment, that this movie should be rated as poorly as it has been. See for yourself.

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Release Date:

19 January 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Refuge See more »

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