Set in Northern Ireland in 1971, this film is a really good action movie with consistent suspense. (My thanks to Mike G. for recommending it to me.)
Gary Hook (Jack O’Connell) is a young British soldier. His small unit is sent to Belfast to investigate a violent incident, and to try to keep the peace. We don’t know much about him except that he has close relationship with his young brother, but he is developed well enough that you are rooting for him.
The unit goes into an IRA-held section of Belfast and a riot breaks out. In the chaos, Gary is trapped in the IRA section of town. The movie consists of Gary’s attempt to return to safety and his unit, encountering numerous life-threatening situations along the way.
The situation Gary faces is very confusing. It’s not clear which characters are in the IRA and which are British loyalists. Further complicating the issue, there are undercover agents on each side. I think creating confusion was the intention of the Screenwriter (Gregory Burke) and Director (Yann Demange), so that the audience could get a more intuitive feel for Hook’s confusion and anxiety.
The political aspects of the struggle aren’t explored, which was fine with me. As far as action movies go, this is a really good one. It will work fine as a rental, but is very exciting and worth a trip the BS.
WARNING: The movie is often violent, but the violence isn’t gratuitous.
Rating- 7.5 – very good movie