Writer: Terry George, Jim Sheridan (Screenplay) Gerry Conlon (Book)
Starring: Daniel Day-Lewis, Emma Thompson, Pete Postlethwaite, John Lynch, Corin Redgrave, Beatie Edney
Plot: A man’s coerced confession to an IRA bombing he did not commit results in the imprisonment of his father as well. An English lawyer fights to free them.
Tagline – In the name of truth… In the name of justice… In the name of love.
Runtime: 2 Hours 13 Minutes
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Powerful & Provoking
Story: In the Name of the Father starts as Gareth Peirce (Thompson) an English lawyer is listening to the story of Gerry Conlon (Day-Lewis) as he tells his story of why he was in England at the time of the bombing Gerry from Belfast during the middle of the battle between the Irish and the English, but not part of the IRA. He gets himself in trouble at home and gets sent to England to lay low.
When a bomb goes off in London Gerry gets blamed and coerced into confessing to the bombing by the overly aggressive English police, along with his father Giuseppe (Postlethwaite). Gareth is the only one that will stand up for him through the courts, can he have his name cleared.
Thoughts on In the Name of the Father
Characters – Gerry Conlon is a rebellious young Irish man that finds himself in London when one of the IRA bombs went off, being Irish he becomes a prime suspect in this terrorist attack and is forced into confessing to the murders he might not be the best-behaved man in the world, but he knows he isn’t a terrorist. Giuseppe Conlon is Gerry’s father that has always tried to teach his son the best and to be best he can be, he stands next to his son on trial while facing the same offences while being innocent. Gareth Peirce is the English lawyer that looks to prove the innocence of Gerry and Giuseppe, she is being told the story before putting her case together.
Performances – Daniel Day-Lewis is as always fantastic in this role, he fully commits to the role like he does every time he gets a role. Pete Postlethwaite is wonderful in the supporting role despite only being 11 years older than Day-Lewis and Emma Thompson is good in her role through the film.
Story – The story follows the wrongfully convicted Irish family that are sentenced to long term prison time for an IRA bombing attack they were never involved in. We see how the English police forced a confession out of the suspects giving proof that the nearly included terrorist Protection act. The story does show us the panic created between the two countries during this time and how people will jump to quick answers to solve the problem in the short term.
Biopic – The movie shows the struggle the Conlon’s faced when facing and serving long prison sentences for crimes they have never committed, with only one lawyer that will try to support their case.
Settings – Each setting shows us where the characters have been during the events of the film, how they were not near the bombing but still blamed.
Final Thoughts – The story of Gerry Conlon and his fellow friends and family that were wrongfully imprisoned is another case of panic to solve the problem rather than solve the case, we have a character that starts off flawed in places before maturing into a man facing reality.
Overall: Powerful performed biopic.