1 March 2009 | stonerlawrence-1
Haunting and memorable
This movie has haunted me since I saw it in the mid-1980s. It is one of the very best movies I have ever seen. I have searched in vain for a videotape (later DVD!) since without avail.
This movie is without peer in depicting the Troubles and in its exploration of loyalty and betrayal. It contains one of Sterling Hayden's last performances and, to say the least, he does not disappoint. Craig Wasson offers the best performance of his career in this film. Patricia Quinn demonstrates her capacity for a dramatic role (in sharp contrast to her performance in "Rocky Horror").
Northern Irish partisans of either stripe should be both warned and reassured: the movie is scrupulously even-handed and neither side is portrayed in a flattering light. Rather, it makes the point that the conflict has degenerated into a corrupt exercise in hatred, blood lust, and revenge.
This movie is stark and raw suspense, disillusionment, and heartbreak. I would happily pay $100 for a used VHS of this film.