Commitments

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"The Irish are the blacks of Europe, Dubliners are the blacks of Ireland, and the North Siders are the blacks of Dublin ... so say it loud -- I'm black and I'm proud!" Or so Jimmy Rabbitte Robert Arkins tells his slightly puzzled friends as he tries to assemble a rhythm & blues show band in a working class community in Dublin in Alan Parker's film The Commitments. Jimmy is a would-be music business wheeler and dealer, and he's decided what Dublin needs is a top-shelf soul band. However, top-shelf soul ...
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Overview

"The Irish are the blacks of Europe, Dubliners are the blacks of Ireland, and the North Siders are the blacks of Dublin ... so say it loud -- I'm black and I'm proud!" Or so Jimmy Rabbitte Robert Arkins tells his slightly puzzled friends as he tries to assemble a rhythm & blues show band in a working class community in Dublin in Alan Parker's film The Commitments. Jimmy is a would-be music business wheeler and dealer, and he's decided what Dublin needs is a top-shelf soul band. However, top-shelf soul musicians are hard to find in Dublin, so he has to make do with what he can find. However, after a long round of auditions, Jimmy makes two inspired discoveries: Deco Andrew Strong, an abrasive and alcoholic streetcar conductor who nevertheless has a voice like the risen ghost of Otis Redding, and Joey "The Lips" Fagan Johnny Murphy, a horn player who knows soul music backwards and forwards and claims to have played with everyone from Wilson Pickett to Elvis Presley. Before long, the band -- called the Commitments -- is packing them in at local clubs. But do they have what it takes to make the big time? Based on the novel by Roddy Doyle, who also co-wrote the screenplay, The Commitments is sparked by fine performances by its young cast and enthusiastic performances of a number of '60s soul classics; the cast, who play their own instruments, reassembled the band for a concert tour after the film became a hit.
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
This unassuming little import from the United Kingdom exploded on U.S. movie screens in 1991, gleaning surprisingly enthusiastic reviews and -- despite an unknown cast with nearly impenetrable Irish brogues -- delighting American audiences. Director Alan Parker, whose films tend toward being overwrought, hit all the right notes in Roddy Doyle's engaging story about working-class youths who form a band to bring '60s-style soul music to their native Dublin. The group's ambitious manager Robert Arkins has to contend with an insufferably egotistical lead singer Andrew Strong and a bed-hopping trumpet player Johnny Murphy while fending off the amorous advances of a backup singer Maria Doyle, but he manages to get "the world's hardest-working band" into a trendy nightclub nonetheless. The cast members -- many of whom made their film debuts in this movie -- still register appealingly in sharply defined roles, and their musical performances still impress as not only accomplished but exhilarating. Not yielding to his normal melodramatic predilections, Parker depicted the milieu with near-documentary fidelity, and he made the characters vivid and engaging. Still beguiling, The Commitments is every bit as entertaining today as it was when it premiered.
All Movie Guide
With perhaps more four-letter words than any other film ever made, The Commitments oozes authenticity. The relentless profanity is part of a rich, hilarious, musically satisfying portrait of a fictional working-class Irish band whose mission is to bring American soul music to Dublin. Avoiding the customary romantic view of Ireland and most clichés about the music industry, rebellious director Alan Parker presents a gritty, alcohol-soaked, often inspired portrait of an Emerald Isle most tourists never see: the alleys and bars of decidely unpicturesque urban ghettoes. The band, fronted by a Joe Cocker-like husky-voiced lead singer, is fabulous, and the music is as powerful as the rhythm-and-blues greats whose songs the band covers -- so good, in fact, that the band released two excellent CDs. This Is Spinal Tap introduced the genre of the rock mockumentary, but The Commitments is a stronger, more genuine, and musically superior film. In fact, it's among the best music films ever made, including those fashioned by "real" bands.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/7/1992
  • UPC: 086162190636
  • Original Release: 1991
  • Source: 20th Century Fox
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Robert Arkins Jimmy Rabbitte
Michael Aherne Steven Clifford
Angeline Ball Imelda Quirke
Maria Doyle Kennedy Natalie Murphy
Dave Finnegan Mickah Wallace
Johnny Murphy Joey "The Lips" Fagan
Andrew Strong Deco Cuffe
Bronagh Gallagher Bernie McGloughlin
Felim Gormley Dean Fay
Glen Hansard Outspan Foster
Kenneth McCluskey Derek Scully
Colm Meaney Mr. Rabbitte
Brian Mac Aodha Uileann Pipe Player
Jezz Bell Heavy Metal Singer
Michael Bolger Community Center Kid
Philip Bredin Ray
Paul Bushnell Avante-Garde-A-Clue Band Member
Jody Campbell Cajun Trio Member
Liam Carney Duffy
Gerard Cassoni Darren Rabbitte
Andrea Corr Sharon Rabbitte
Jim Corr Avante-Garde-A-Clue Band Member
John Cronin Kid with Horse
Lance Daly Kid with Harmonica
Emily Dawson Punk Girl Singer
Winston Dennis Man in Limousine
Phelim Drew Roddy the Reporter
Derek Duggan Photographer
Lindsay Fairclough Tracey Rabbitte
Ruth Fairclough Linda Rabbitte
Sheila Flitton Church Cleaner
Patrick Foy Cajun Trio Member
Ronan Hardiman Dance Hall Manager
Kristel Harris Coconuts Trio Member
Derek Herbert Duffy's Sidekick
Larry Hogan Avante-Garde-A-Clue Band Member
John Hubbard
Ros Hubbard
John Hubbard
Sean Hughes Dave from Eejit Records
Colm Mac Con Iomaire Fiddler Auditioner
Dave Kane Coconuts Trio Member
Philomena Kavanagh Rabbitte's Neighbor
Bernard Keelan Avante-Garde-A-Clue Band Member
Anne Kent Mrs. Rabbitte
Aoife Lawless Imelda's Sister
Pat Leavy Unemployment Official
Eanna Mac Liam Failed Drug Buyer
Josylen Lyons Deco's Fan
Conor Malone Protest Song Singer
Dick Massey Billy Mooney
Mikel Murfi Music Journalist
Alan Murray Cajun Trio Member
Bob Navan Regency Pub Barman
Mick Nolan Imelda's Father
Eamon O'Connor Only De Lonely Singer
Paddy O'Connor Rock Salmon Man
Owen O'Gorman Duffy's Sidekick
Rynagh O'Grady Bernie's Mother
Maura O'Malley Joey's Mother
Mark O'Regan Father Molloy
Michael O'Reilly Greg
Alan Parker Eejit Record Producer
Maria Place Coconuts Trio Member
Eileen Reid Imelda's Mother
Peter Rowen Shy Skateboard Auditioner
Ger Ryan Pawnbroker
Blaise Smith Pool Hall Manager
Tricia Smith Les Miserables Singer
Canice William Smiths' Song Singer
Technical Credits
Alan Parker Director
Marc Abraham Co-producer
Armyan Bernstein Executive Producer
Laurie Borg Production Manager
Karen Brookes Set Decoration/Design
Paul Bushnell Score Composer
Dick Clement Co-producer, Screenwriter
Roddy Doyle Screenwriter
Arden Gantly Art Director
Mark Geraghty Art Director
Gerry Hambling Editor
Souter Harris Executive Producer
Ros Hubbard Casting
John Hubbard Casting
Ian La Frenais Co-producer, Screenwriter
Brian Morris Production Designer
Lynda Myles Producer
Roger Randall-Cutler Producer
Michael Roberts Camera Operator
Penny Rose Costumes/Costume Designer
Tom Rosenberg Executive Producer
G. Marq Roswell Musical Direction/Supervision
Gale Tattersall Cinematographer
David Wimbury Producer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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(3)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I just love this movine

    And really wish they were still together.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    You will need to watch this one twice

    The dry humor and subtle sight gags are enough to blow away the gloom and grit of of urban Ireland, the amazing music of the best wanna be R&amp B band yet is inspiring.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    the commitments

    this was a great movie! a barrell of laughs. the music is great, bringing back soul from aretha to wilson! i recommend it to anyone whose irish or ever wanted to be!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews