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Black Irish heartbreak

Neighborhood themes, or cliches?
By PETER KEOUGH  |  October 24, 2007
2.0 2.0 Stars
INSIDE_RISHS
FAMILY TIES: More neighborhood themes and clichés.

Brad Gann’s feature debut, last year’s Boston Irish Film Festival opener, taps into some of the same neighborhood themes as The Departed: guilt, redemption, family ties. Or are they clichés? Cole (Michael Angarano) is the good brother, a cringing mass of embarrassment and repression with a blazing fastball and a supposed vocation for the priesthood. Elder brother Terry (Tom Guiry) wants to drag Cole into a life of drugs and crime. Sis Kathleen (Emily VanCamp) is pregnant and out of the picture, sent away by would-be lace-curtain Irish mom Margaret (Melissa Leo). As if dad Desmond (Brendan Gleeson) — alcoholic, ineffectual, tyrannical, unemployed — didn’t provide enough shame. You know there’s going to be a big game somewhere in this, as well as reconciliations in the intensive-care unit. A plus are the two or three scenes of genuine heartbreak.
Related: Black Irish, Southie rules, October lite, More more >
  Topics: Reviews , Michael Angarano, Brendan Gleeson, Tom Guiry,  More more >
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