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Blind Flight (2003)

The true story of Irishman Brian Keenan and Englishman John McCarthy's extraordinary relationship as hostages of militias in Lebanon during the 1979-91 Civil War.


John Furse


John Furse
1 win & 7 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ian Hart ... Brian Keenan
Linus Roache ... John McCarthy
Kalim Koleilat Kalim Koleilat ... Industrial Cell - Kidnap Guard
Nayef Rashed ... Industrial Cell - Militia Officer
Bassem Breish ... Storeroom - Joker
Dany El Khoury Dany El Khoury ... Storeroom - Rida (as Dany B. Khoury)
Vic Tablian ... Storeroom - Senior Cleric
Mohamad Chamas Mohamad Chamas ... Underground Cell - Abed (as Mohammed Chamas)
Ziad Lahoud Ziad Lahoud ... Underground Cell - Said
Fadi Sakr Fadi Sakr ... Underground Cell - Safi
Bahi Ghubril Bahi Ghubril ... Other Guards - Releasing Officer
Abdala Keserwani Abdala Keserwani ... Other Guards - Farmhouse Guard
Haroutioun Toupoushian Haroutioun Toupoushian ... Other Guards - Mazin
Asbed Zaderian Asbed Zaderian ... Other Guards - First Gunman
Aine Ni Mhuiri Aine Ni Mhuiri ... Brian's Mum


Keenan and McCarthy spent 4.5 years confined together, held underground for much of their captivity, at times chained to each other and to the walls of their prisons. The two men, who could easily have found themselves at opposite ends of a gun barrel in Northern Ireland during the Troubles, instead forged a relationship which transcended all that appeared to divide them. "Blind Flight" tells the story of this compelling relationship as they both resurrect their deepest memories, feelings, fears and loves. In their near biblical journey they uncover many of the forces which made them blind and captive human beings prior to their physical captivity. They finally discover a compassion for their captors which makes the film a 'love story' in the fullest and most humanistic sense. Written by Anonymous

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Official Sites:

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Release Date:

9 April 2004 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

La nuit des otages See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital


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Did You Know?


Brian's fingernails remain neatly trimmed throughout the period of captivity. See more »

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User Reviews

An entertaining film where you learn a lot without realising it.
29 October 2004 | by claudette-flintSee all my reviews

How to convey five years captivity in one hour and a half with the whole range of contradictory feelings. This is what Blind Flight is about: Beirut 1985, the true story of Keenan and McCarthy kidnapped by a militant Muslim fundamentalist group. One expects immediately a vision of "baddies V Goodies" but the film is a lot more subtle and fairer than that. The Muslim guardians, despite their violence (Lebanon was in a state of war), remain human, and not stereotyped. In fact they appear as victims of politics and in the same time they reproduce the system they are fighting. What is remarkable is the way John Furse maintains your interest throughout an almost static film; for instance one of the kidnapper is proud to show them his new born baby but he is also proud of his new kalachnikof. The film is intelligent, moving, funny and thought provoking. My thought was "what would I do in their place?". McCarthy and Keenan give us a lesson of courage and wisdom we have been longing for for decades. They don't save the world, they broaden its mind by undergoing the kind of test that enlightens what is important in life.

We were very lucky to meet John Furse the director and McCarthy at the end of the show. They were as genuine, interesting and lucid as their film. John Furse's talent makes me look forward for his next film.

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