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13 user 64 critic

The Journey (2016)

PG-13 | | Drama | 16 June 2017 (USA)
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During the 2006 Northern Ireland peace talks, Sinn Fein leader Martin McGuiness and Democratic Party leader Ian Paisley are forced to travel by car together.

Director:

Nick Hamm

Writer:

Colin Bateman (screenplay by)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Timothy Spall ... Ian Paisley
Colm Meaney ... Martin McGuinness
Freddie Highmore ... Jack the Driver
John Hurt ... Harry Patterson
Catherine McCormack ... Kate Elgar
Toby Stephens ... Tony Blair
Barry Ward ... Ian Paisley, Jr.
Ian Beattie ... Gerry Adams
Ian McElhinney ... Rory O'Suaird
Mark Lambert Mark Lambert ... Bertie Ahern
Daniel Portman ... Frank
Lucy Cray-Miller Lucy Cray-Miller ... Reporter (as Lucy Cray Miller)
Lorna Quinn Lorna Quinn ... Reporter
Richard Doubleday ... Reporter
Patrick Joseph Byrnes ... Reporter
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Storyline

In 2006, Northern Ireland's bloody Troubles had dragged on for decades. Now with the growing threat of a new generation inspired by the 9/11 attacks to escalate the conflict to new levels of destruction, both the Catholic Republican and the Protestant Unionist sides are finally persuaded to seriously explore a peace agreement at UK Prime Minister Tony Blair's urging. Unfortunately, the principle negotiators, firebrand Democratic Unionist Party leader Ian Paisley and Sinn Fein politician Martin McGuinness, are decades-long implacable enemies. However with talks about to start, Paisley has his wedding anniversary that he is determined to attend at home, and McGuinness decides he must accompany his enemy to prevent him from being persuaded to abandon this chance for peace. With the Prime Minister and his MI-5 staff nervously watching from secret cameras, the two foes undertake a journey together in which they bridge the seemingly unbridgeable and change the course of history. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Life made them enemies. Politics made them adversaries. One journey made them friends.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for thematic elements including violent images and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 June 2017 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Viagem See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In Journey you can see 3 actors from -"Game of Thrones" (TV)_ who played the parts of characters Barristan Selmy - Kings guard for Dany (sat at the table of the Sinn Fein men), Paud Payne - Tyrian and Brienne's squire (guy at the cash register in the gas station) and Ser Meryn Trant who Arya killed in the brothel (Gerry Adams). See more »

Goofs

Aerial shot following the MPV as it travels across the Forth Road Bridge shows the under-construction Queensferry Crossing bridge - it only began construction in 2011. See more »

Quotes

Martin McGuinness: So, fifty years married? You get less for murder.
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Crazy Credits

During the end credits for the main cast photographs of the real Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness at various official occasions are shown. See more »

Connections

References Jackie Brown (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Are You Getting Through
Written by Glen Hansard
Published by WB Music Corp. (ASCAP)
Performed by Glen Hansard, Joseph Doyle, Graham Hopkins, Ruth O'Mahony Brady, Michael Buckley, Ronan Dooney, Una O'Kane, Paule Hughes, Katie O'Conner, David, Odlum
Recorded fby David Odlum at Westland Studios, Dublin and Black Box Studio, France
Produced by David Odlum
Appears Courtesy of Anti Records
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User Reviews

 
speculative history
15 June 2017 | by David FergusonSee all my reviews

Greetings again from the darkness. Only the rarest of fiction can match the depth and intensity of historically crucial watershed moments. A list of such moments would certainly include the 2006 St. Andrews Agreement that ended 40 years of violent civil war between the Unionist and Republican factions of Northern Ireland. Director Nick Hamm and writer Colin Bateman team up to bring us a speculative dramatization of the conversation that 'might' have led to the treaty.

Timothy Spall plays Reverend Ian Paisley, leader of the Unionists and an anti-Catholic evangelical minister. Colm Meaney plays Martin McGuinness, the rebellious former IRA leader ("allegedly", he clarifies) who leads the Irish Republicans (Sinn Fein). These two extremists have been at war for most of their lives, yet had never met until circumstances brought them together for negotiations.

One's take on the film will likely be determined by the level of need for historical accuracy and any personal connection to long-lasting war in Northern Ireland. Either of these traits will likely have you scoffing at the backseat verbal sparring and the plot contrivances that allow the two mortal enemies to slowly break down the ideological barriers. On the other hand, it can be viewed as a mis-matched buddy movie featuring a game of witty one-upmanship with political and historical relevance.

Either way, the dueling actors are a pleasure to watch. Mr. Spall surely has the more theatrical role, and he revels in the buttoned-up judgmental nature of Paisley – a man loyal enough to be attending his 50th wedding anniversary party, and sufficiently devoted to his beliefs that his last visit to a movie theatre was in 1973 as he led the protests against The Exorcist. In contrast, Mr. Meaney plays McGuinness as both determined to find common ground and worn down by the years of fighting and lack of progress.

Toby Stephens plays Prime Minister Tony Blair, while Freddie Highmore is the young driver charged with surreptitiously igniting conversation between the two rivals. He is fed instructions through his ear-piece by an MI5 director played by John Hurt, in one of his final film appearances. Unfortunately, this bit of "narration" came across as condescending to this viewer who surely could have done without such elementary guidance. Still, the sight of Mr. Hurt on film is always welcome.

The infusion of humor is nearly non-stop. There's a comical exchange about Samuel L. Jackson, a joke about the Titanic, and a Paisley diatribe at a gas station over a declined credit card that would easily fit in most any Hollywood buddy flick. However, these elements undermine one of the early on screen interviews we see when a citizen states bombs going off as you walk down the street is "part of life". "You can almost taste the hatred" is a great line, but unfortunately doesn't match the script of what we witness on screen. The two men re-hash some key events such as 1972's Bloody Sunday, and it's these moments that remind us just how important this new agreement was to the country. It's understandable (and relevant today) how 40 years of hate can become a way of life and difficult to end, and it also shows us just how far actual communication can go in finding common ground between folks … even The Chuckles Brothers.


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