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the girl from the naked eye
 The World of Film in Australia - on the Internet Updated Thursday, November 20, 2014 - Edition No 924 

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DEVIL'S OWN, THE

SYNOPSIS: Dangerous, angry young Irishman Rory Devaney slips out of Belfast for New York, where his organisation's highly placed contact finds him lodgings with the unsuspecting family of Police Seargeant Tom OíMeara (Harrison Ford). "Safest place in New York" to hide away. Rory warms to the family but cannot forget his mission - to buy stinger missiles that could change the balance of power between the Irish rebels and the British forces. OíMeara is devastated when his own family and home are threatened as Roryís plan brings the conflict into this otherwise happy home. The consequences rip them all apart.

Review by Louise Keller:
Powerful drama with quality production values and major star power. Casting these two major stars whose appeal canvasses a vast audience works well, and fans will be satisfied by many tight close ups of both. Brad Pitt, who must be praised for his diverse choices in screen roles, is obviously keen to broaden his scope from handsome hunk who makes the girls drool. The camera truly loves him, and at times it works against his performance; when we are admiring his physical attributes instead of getting into the character. His performance as Rory is complex and believable: he shows a toughness that we havenít seen before on screen. And we see the human side of the Irish terrorist on a mission. Harrison Ford is always convincingly solid as the man with integrity and decency. His Tom OíMeara is such a man. He is fleshed out with traits that are oh-so-human, and is essentially a decent man with high principles. Much like his character in Patriot Games. A stunning musical score enhances the action; the plaintive Irish pipes lend a haunting melody, while pulsating rhythms bring tension and drama. A quality pic, guaranteed to enjoy box office success.

Review by Andrew L. Urban:
This is what Hollywood does best: an emotive thriller with star-power, great technical values and a fabulous score (as Louise the muso noted). There is no question it is entertainment with a big E; there is no question that everyone does their thing very well, very effectively. But I worry. The human and political issues are fudged: the ambivalence of the filmís morality, disguised though it is, lets us down a bit. Seeking political balance, the film is astride the issues of Northern Ireland. For example: we see Rory the 8 year old watch his father being shot at the modest dinner table. The incident has no context, other than the general air of "the troubles". It becomes a senseless murder that is actually quite out of context for us. Yet throughout the film, this is the device that we cling to in excusing Roryís murderous history and escalating hatred. It is the excuse for Americans sending missiles to the IRA. I donít want to make too much of all this because the film is fiction, entertainment, escapism - not history or documentary. But film is such a powerful medium, it can easily become the source of received wisdom for so many, with the attendant problems of building socio-political scenarios on that feeble footing."



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DEVIL'S OWN, THE (R)
(US)

CAST: Harrison Ford, Brad Pitt with Margaret Colin, Ruben Blades, Treat Williams, George Hearn, Mitchell Ryan, Natascha McElhone, Paul Ronan, Simon Jones, Julia Stiles

DIRECTOR: Alan J. Pakula

PRODUCER: Lawrence Gordon & Robert F. Colesberry

SCRIPT: David Aaron Cohen & Vincent Patrick & Kevin Jarre (from story by Kevin Jarre)

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Gordon Willis

EDITOR: Tom Rolf, Dennis Virkler

MUSIC: James Horner

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Jane Musky

RUNNING TIME: 107 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: ColTristar

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: March 27, 1997

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AUSTRALIAN VIDEO DISTRIBUTOR: Col TriStar
AUSTRALIAN VIDEO RELEASE: AUGUST 19, 1998
RRP: $24.95







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