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- "The Story Behind the Story" featurette
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Top Customer Reviews
For "Evelyn", Pierce Brosnan goes back to his Irish roots and does a good job in an atypical role for him. Stephen Rea, Aidan Quinn and Alan Bates are all convincing as lawyers of very different personalities and experience, who nonetheless find themselves in sympathy with Desmond Doyle and working together on a seemingly impossible task. Sophie Vavasseur, the young actress who plays Evelyn, does so with just the right amount of pluck and innocence. Although "Evelyn" is about a court case, it is not a courtroom drama. There is relatively little time allotted to courtroom scenes. The relationships between the characters and the ways in which they are affected by their unfortunate circumstances are emphasized over the legal intricacies of the case. All in all, "Evelyn " is a touching and entertaining true story of a parent's commitment to his children, whose own willingness to change out of love for them ultimately brought about legal changes that helped many children in similar circumstances.
The movie is based on the true story of Desmond Doyle, who forever changed the laws in Ireland in 1953 by proving that the Children's Act of 1942 worked against the unalienable rights granted to parents and children in the Irish constitution. Of course, liberties with the film have been taken along the way, but the love that Doyle had for his children, and they for him, comes through loud and clear.
Kudos goes to Sophie Vavasseur, Hugh McDonagh, and Niall Beagan who play the Doyle children, Sophie, Maurice and Dermott. These children performed their roles very well, and are always a welcome addition to the scenes they are in.
Sophie Vavasseur could have played up being cute, or played up being a brat with the nuns, but she, like the adults around her, goes for natural style. She plays Evelyn as a real child, and in doing so, makes that character all the more real to the audience.
Credit too goes to the adults around them, who allowed these kids to be actors, without fear of the scenes being stolen by them. And speaking of those adults:
The Catholic Church: My one quibble with this film is how the Christian Brothers are portrayed. One could walk away from this film thinking that the Christian Brothers were good and the nuns were bad. Not so, they all stunk. Never the less, the interaction at the convent, rings true of behavior by those employed by the church then, and sadly, now.
Frank Kelly: Playing Henry Doyle, the father of Desmond and grandfather to the children, Kelly does an excellent job capturing the heart of man who loves his family dearly and does what he can to support all of them, while he is with them, and while he is not.Read more ›
Aiden Quinn, Julianna Margulies, Stephen Rea, John Lynch and the ever brilliant Alan Bates are all marvelous. Sophie Vavasseur as the precious EVELYN is a joy. I would never have heard of this film had I not watched a Brosnan interview. Great film making is so often passed over by glitzy Hollywood fare. The true art of film is found in beautiful quiet films like this one.
Desmond Doyle was a blue-collar Dublin painter and decorator, left to take care of his daughter Evelyn and her brothers alone after his wife had run away with another man. Jobless, penniless and more given to drowning his sorrows in Guinness than addressing them head-on, he was ill-suited for the task, and it didn't take long for church and state to step in and decree that, under prevalent law, Evelyn and her brothers were to be committed to Catholic orphanage schools. Certain that he wouldn't be able to afford a lawyer - and having been told that his case was hopeless anyway - Doyle unsuccessfully tried to regain his children by other means, his methods of choice being bullying and abduction.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
definitely makes you happy and sad and restores hope in humanity, reminds you that against the odds, there are things worth fighting for.Published 2 months ago by elaine murphy
This is a touching, positive outcome, true story, that showcases another fine acting choice for Pierce Brosnan.Published 4 months ago by Melanie Andrejczak
I needed the story of Evelyn and her family to encourage my faith in people and community. Also a very good job by the actors.Published 4 months ago by Sherrie Crandal