Movie Review – The Banshees of Inisherin (2022)

After discussing The Banshees of Inisherin, the consensus is if you’re the dumper, this movie will hit a little too close for comfort. If you’re the one being dumped, then you might find this movie irritating though very well made.

In this dramatic/dark comedy, Colm (played by Brendan Gleeson) decides to no longer interact with or be friends with his long-time friend Padriac (Colin Farrell). Padriac is blindsided by Colm’s decision since they haven’t been fighting. To make matters worse, Colm threatens to cut off one of his fiddle-playing fingers anytime Padriac speaks to him.

If the premise sounds childish, it is. However, the way director and writer Martin McDonagh layers this story is what’s interesting.

In addition to the squabble between the two characters, the story is set in 1923 during the Irish Civil War. Brohter has been set against brother rather than a common enemy like the British Empire. Colm and Padriac find themselves at odds over a petty dispute. Colm has decided to reprioritize his goals to focus on his music rather than waste his time with Padriac at the pub. But how serious is Colm about this goal if he’s willing to mutilate the part of him required to make music.

Brendan Gleeson and Colin Farrell in the film THE BANSHEES OF INISHERIN. Photo by Jonathan Hession. Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures. © 2022 20th Century Studios All Rights Reserved.

It’s fascinating that all the characters seem to be dealing with similar issues, but they all respond differently. Isolation, lack of options, and legacy drive these characters to their respective goals, but they all must decide how much to hurt the ones close to them, themselves, or even if it’s worth the risk at all. Another layer to the movie is how supporting characters act as mirrors to the main cast. For example, Padraic’s sister Siobhan (Kerry Condon) dreams of a better life off the isle of Inisherin when she’s confronted by the potential of becoming like the shop keep Mrs. O’Riordan (Brid Ni Neachtain) or the widowed Mrs. McCormick (Sheila Flitton). Even the town’s dunce Dominic (Barry Keoghan) is hoping to find love whether at the pub with one of the “groupies” hanging around Colm or even Siobhan.

The cinematography in this movie is outstanding. The usage of light and shadow not only conveys the essence of the scene, but the framing of characters highlight their plights. For example, Colm sits in his home-made prison as Padriac looks in through the window grilles, or when Padriac looks longingly though a window that is located between Colm and his new musical student, or the way the sheers look menacing impaled on the table.

That said, this is a slow-going movie – the first 30 minutes are downright boring. However, the universal messages in McDonagh’s screenplay might be the Banshees that haunt audiences when the story between Padriac and Colm ends.

Rating: 3.5/5.

Colin Farrell in the film THE BANSHEES OF INISHERIN. Photo by Jonathan Hession. Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures. © 2022 20th Century Studios All Rights Reserved.

“The Banshees of Inisherin” is available now on Digital, Blu-ray and DVD.

The Big Comic Page was provided a copy of “The Banshees of Inisherin” for this review.

The bonus features include:

· Creating The Banshees of Inisherin – Go into the inimitable mind of director-writer Martin McDonagh as he delves into The Banshees of Inisherin, from story inception and reunion of its gifted actors, to searching the islands of Ireland for the perfect, evocative locations.

Deleted Scenes

· Chasing Colm
· Colm Can’t Compose
· Parents’ Grave and Peadar
· Siobhan Crying Too Loud
· Stoic Equals Boring

The writer of this piece is: Laurence Almalvez
Laurence tweets from @IL1511

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