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In the Name of the Father


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Product Details

  • Actors: Daniel Day-Lewis, Pete Postlethwaite, Alison Crosbie, Philip King, Emma Thompson
  • Directors: Jim Sheridan
  • Writers: Jim Sheridan, Gerry Conlon, Terry George
  • Producers: Nye Heron, Jim Sheridan, Arthur Lappin, Gabriel Byrne
  • Format: NTSC
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Mca (Universal)
  • VHS Release Date: Nov. 5 2002
  • Run Time: 133 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 630310360X
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #551 in Video (See Top 100 in Video)

Product Description

Amazon.ca

Based on a true story, this rousing and tough-minded film details British overzealousness in prosecuting an IRA bombing in the 1970s. Grabbing up a pair of small-time thieves (Daniel Day-Lewis and John Lynch) and their families, the government concocts a conspiracy case against them and tosses them all in jail. Until then, Day-Lewis has been a ne'er-do-well, an apolitical goof looking for a quick score. But confronted with the toughness of his own father (Pete Postlethwaite) in the face of British torture, he begins to realize just what the stakes are. In the Name of the Father is at times grueling and never less than compelling, with a complex performance by Day-Lewis and a strong one by Emma Thompson, as the lawyer who finally cracks through the British obstructions to the truth. --Marshall Fine

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Shelley Gammon on Dec 21 2003
Format: VHS Tape
Gerry Conlon (Daniel Day Lewis) was a small-time petty thief in the early seventies and found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time when IRA terrorists bombed a pub in 1974 - killing 4 people.
Totally innocent, Conlon is treated with contempt - even physically tortured and terrorized until he confesses only to make the torture stop.
Soon his father and most of his family are also convicted of bomb making and being part of larger conspiracies including being deeply entrenched in the IRA.
His father Giuseppe (played masterfully by Pete Postlethwaite) and most of his family are also rounded up and promptly convicted - from the youngest cousin to an elderly grandmother - all wrongly convicted and sent to bleak, dank prisons for very lengthy terms.
What makes this so compelling and tragic is that this is entirely a true story. Conlon really served 15 years in prison and thanks to his diligent attorney and the discovery of withheld evidence that freed him in 1989 - otherwise he may well still be languishing in jail, with little sympathy from the outside.
The only good side of this horrific twist of justice was the closeness Gerry ends up having with his father. Once somewhat distant, they find themselves as unwilling cellmates in prison. As miserable as they both are at the situation, the fact that they can keep each other company is a bittersweet comfort.
They grow closer than they likely would have ever gotten had they not been imprisoned together. Compounded by age and the damp, awful conditions of the prison, Giuseppe finds himself sicker and sicker until he is finally taken to the hospital all too late.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By happyfeet on May 26 2004
Format: DVD
Daniel Day-Lewis, in another brilliant, Oscar-nominated performance. In the Name of the Father is a gritty, gut wrenching drama by the talented Irish film maker Jim Sheridan. Daniel Day-Lewis proves why he is so respected and revered as an actor. Though his role as Gerard Conlon received less press than his turn as Christy Brown in My Left Foot, or Bill the Butcher, in Gangs of New York, he bristles with intensity as the troubled Conlon. Day-Lewis proves why he is one of the finest actors of his generation. A true method actor, Day-Lewis is said to have gone through interrogations from police to lend true authenticity to the role. He has a rare and unequaled fire in his eyes that made me an immediate fan.I could simply not take my eyes off of him. He is not just another pretty face...although, what a face...he is without a doubt a very gifted actor.
Day-Lewis and Pete Postlethwaite are just riviting on screen together. Their portrayl of father and son sings and stings with realism and sincerity.
This film has somehow gone largely unnoticed, however, it is a must see for those of you who enjoy a dose of reality with your drama.
Based on the book of the same name, written by Gerard Conlon himself, the movie does not cast a favorable light on the British Judicial system and their need to place blame on someone, despite their innocence. Your heart will break as you watch Guisseppe and Gerard fight for their case to be heard.
The movie, while placing focus on Day-Lewis's character, is an excellent forum for the wonderful character actor that Postlethwaite is. Their moments together are powerful and passionate. To find a better suited pair for father and son, one would indeed be hard pressed.
This film does exactly what it intended to do. 1.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Shashank Tripathi on April 13 2004
Format: DVD
During a spate of IRA-triggered bombings in the early 1970s in the UK, the beleaguered British government created a haphazard "Prevention of Terrorism Act" which allowed the arrest of any individual on the flimsiest of suspicions. When explosions rocked two pubs in Guildford (London?) a group of four Irish junkies -- Gerry Conlon (Daniel Day Lewis) and three others -- were wrongfully arrested in what we are led to believe was a miscarriage of justice.
The movie is based on Gerry's memoirs, so it cannot be passed off as impeccably "factual" but if some memories have been bent into formulaic shape for entertainment purposes, the truth still remains: these people were not murdering masterminds.
There are really two stories working in the film:
(1) The steamrolling of the "Guildford Four" by the British government; and
(2) The atavistic relationship between Gerry and his father Guiseppe while the two were in prison
Each of these stories would have made a taut and fascinating film by itself, but combined they are an incredible force. Gerry's interrogation is an immemorable moment in cinematic history, including disconcerting scenes of police officials watching the torture in silence.
The movie doesn't let up for a moment. The courtroom drama is clearly peripheral to the theme, but it provides some of the film's best moments. While some of the scenes in the latter half of the movie may seem a bit redundant (similar things happening over and over again in the prison life) all that is obscured by the sheer screen presence of Daniel Day Lewis. In fact, the only time you are not riveted by the all-round powerhouse acting is when U2's poignant background score has taken center stage.
An absolute must for fans of political films, and a terrific drama for the rest of us. I highly recommend it.
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