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- 9 deleted scenes with optional commentary
- Making-of featurette
- Alternate ending
Top Customer Reviews
The Sullivans, a young couple with two adorable daughters, slip illegally into the U.S., moving to New York. In theory this is to help Da start his acting career; in reality, it is an attempt to escape from the sad memories of young son Frankie, recently died at 5 of a brain tumor.
The performances are all, all stunning. Samantha Morton, her hair shorn like a penitent nun's, gives a stunning performance driven by the despair in her eyes. The real-world sisters Sara and Emma Bolger seem completely transparent; they leave the impression they are not acting at all, but really living the loss of their beloved brother. The African actor Djimon Hounsou looms like a sad but powerful diety over the sorrowful family, alternatively reflecting their pain and offering them solace.
The ending will surprise you - I won't give it away here - but it is a sweet resolution. The film seems to have a basis in truth, as it is written by director Jim Sheridan and his two daughters, and dedicated at the end to the memory of Frankie Sheridan (who, as it happens, was Jim Sheridan's brother rather than his son).
One thing you must realize throughout the film, when it takes turns toward optimism when other films would grow darker, is that the story is told through the eyes of Christie, the 10-year-old daughter of an Irish immigrant family recently relocated to New York. She narrates the story. She speeds it up and slows it down as she needs to. She talks of her sister Ariel's fears, of her mother's strength and of her father's lost smile. And, most importantly, she puts a positive spin on each of her proud family's struggles.
Another director might have taken this same story and gone in a different, darker direction with it. The elements are there, certainly. The family is poor, living in a tenement alongside beggars and drug addicts. Johnny, the girls' father, is an out-of-work actor who's uprooted his family to escape sad memories of his son Frankie, who died. Mateo, the next-door neighbor, and Sarah, the mother, are both faced with life-threatening conditions.
But the atmosphere that Sheridan provides us in this film is comforting and light. The city is enchanting. The tenement is both scary and magical, depending upon the story that Christie is telling the audience. No adult problem goes unsolved for long, even ones that seem particularly bleak. Throughout these positive twists, the importance of the narrator is key. Happy endings are important to a little girl, particularly one who feels so responsible for her own family.Read more ›
Samantha Morton and Paddy Considine as the parents are as fine as actors can get. The daughters are played with impeccable grace and skill by Sarah and Emma Bolger, and Mateo (their new fried) is the creation of the beautiful actor Djimon Hounsou who shines in this pivotal role. This story is related with underplayed sensitivity and heartwarming tenderness.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I thought this was about immigration, a young couple from Ireland to New York, but it more than that. I would recommend this moviePublished 23 hours ago by Jude Cigrand
If a story means anything rather than the echo of gun-shots, or great acting still has the power to touch your heart rather than bombs going off all movie long, then this may be... Read morePublished 6 days ago by dennis
Just watch this film. It is so beautiful. Would melt the heart of the biggest cynic.Published 3 months ago by C. Hammell
This is a wonderful expression of the variety of life in America. It was a truly inspirational experience.Published 6 months ago by Michael Eugene Mosier