just never know what is going to happen"
It's surprising what can happen to just a few people in Dublin. John (Murphy)
hates his job and has stupidly lost the love of his life. Deirdre (Macdonald)
thinks she has found happiness with an older man. Sally (Henderson) is cultivating
a moustache and hates men. Det. Jerry Lynch (Meaney) wants to be a Reality
TV star. Oscar (Wilmot) is having real problems with his self-esteem and
Lehiff (Farrell) is hoping to move up in the crime world.
Spending some time in the lives of downtrodden working class
might sound slightly depressing but add a sprig of Irish charm and humour
and you have a character drama that is funny as well as emotional.
Movies like this with an interweaving story rely on an ensemble
cast and Intermission is no exception. Debut making Director John Crowley
has assembled some of Ireland's and Britain's finest to fill this motley
crew. Colin Farrell proves again that he is not just a pretty face and starts
to live up to that next big thing motif he has been labelled with. His portrayal
of petty thug Lehiff is superb, showing his range as an actor. He is equally
at ease playing the bad or the good guy and isn't afraid to diversify in
his career, which is quite refreshing for a top-draw leading man.
The very underrated Colm Meaney reminds us that there is more
to him than a Star Trek uniform with another attention grabbing performance.
His Detective Lynch is everything that is both good and bad about the modern
law enforcer, filled with passion for the law but uses excessive measures
to enforce it.
Shirley Henderson is as watchable as ever. Her character might
be the brunt of quite a few jokes but the strength of the actress comes
through when you discover why she is like she is. David Wilmot also puts
in a noticeable performance as the downtrodden Oscar.
Cillian Murphy and Kelly Macdonald are also good but their
characters don't really have the screen presence of the rest of the ensemble
to make them standout. This is mainly due to the writing as their story
isn't the most interesting of the interweaving tales.
As character driven dramas go, Intermission is a good example
of the genre. You are interested in the characters and care about the outcome
of their situation. With a little more work on some of the plotlines, especially
John and Deirdre's, this could have been a lot better but as it is you feel
that, while interesting, you don't have enough of your emotions invested
in the characters to keep your attention 100% on every story.
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