Some Mother's Son

Some Mother's Son

4.5 2
Director: Terry George

Cast: Helen Mirren, Fionnula Flanagan, Aidan Gillen

     
 

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A 1981 hunger strike in a Belfast prison is the historical inspiration for the drama Some Mother's Son, which attempts to focus on the personal dimensions of the event through its portrayal of the families of the striking prisoners. Directed by Terry George, co-author of In the Name of the Father, the film is anchored by Helen Mirren's performance asSee more details below

Overview

A 1981 hunger strike in a Belfast prison is the historical inspiration for the drama Some Mother's Son, which attempts to focus on the personal dimensions of the event through its portrayal of the families of the striking prisoners. Directed by Terry George, co-author of In the Name of the Father, the film is anchored by Helen Mirren's performance as Kathleen Quigley, an educated, thoughtful schoolteacher who feels the Irish-English conflict is remote from her life until her son is arrested for his involvement with the Irish Republican Army. Yet while she supports her son and works to save his life, Kathleen nevertheless maintains her disdain for violence. This is in great contrast to Annie Higgins, the mother of Gerard's collaborator, who wholeheartedly embraces the IRA's mission. Despite their differing philosophies, the women form an uneasy bond over the suffering of their imprisoned sons. Kathleen finds herself increasingly politicized but finds herself facing a moral dilemma when the prisoners begin a hunger strike. As Gerard's next of kin, it is her right to agree to intravenous feeding should her son enter a coma; however, many people, including Annie, would see such as an act as betrayal of the strike, leaving Kathleen with a choice between saving her son's life and respecting his cause.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Laura Abraham
Some Mother's Son is a fictional account of the 1981 Irish prison hunger strikes that took the life of Bobby Sands. The film is much more than a retelling of this turbulent time in Ireland's history, however; it gains substantial weight from director Terry George's creation of a world where two women try to reconcile their motherhood with their political identities. Irish suffering at the hands of the English is a story that has been better written and better directed in past movies (such as In the Name of the Father), but there are few war movies that show the anguish of mothers as this one does or that demonstrate the inseparability of war and politics from people's daily lives. Regardless of the side they fight for, every soldier is "some mother's son." This is remarkably illustrated by Helen Mirren's pacifist schoolteacher, who is unaware her son is fighting with the IRA and must come to terms with the fact that he may die for his ideals. Fionnula Flanagan, meanwhile, plays the mother of another IRA prisoner who has also joined the hunger strike: pro-Ireland all the way, she accepts her son's right to die for his political ideals. Although the women come from diverse economic and political backgrounds, their sorrow unites them, and the portrayals by Mirren and Flanagan are utterly engaging, making the sorrow a mother feels during wartime both real and personal.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/06/2011
UPC:
0883316328569
Original Release:
1996
Source:
Warner Archives
Time:
1:52:00
Sales rank:
33,325

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Helen Mirren Kathleen Quigley
Fionnula Flanagan Annie Higgis
Aidan Gillen Gerard Quigley
David Patrick O'Hara Frank Higgins
John Lynch Bobby Sands
Tim Woodward Harrington
Ciarán Hinds Danny Boyle
Gerard McSorley Father Daly
Geraldine O'Rawe Alice Quigley
Robert Taylor Election Agent

Technical Credits
Terry George Director,Screenwriter
Joan Bergin Costumes/Costume Designer
Edward Burke Producer
Connor Devlin Art Director
Arthur Lappin Producer
Craig McKay Editor
Helen Mirren Associate Producer
Nuala Moiselle Casting
Michael Murray Asst. Director
Carolyn Scott Set Decoration/Design
Jim Sheridan Producer,Screenwriter
Brian Simmons Sound/Sound Designer
Geoffrey Simpson Cinematographer
Bill Whelan Score Composer,Songwriter
David Wilson Production Designer

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