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MY NAME IS JOE

UK / Germany / France / Italy / Spain, 1998 (MIFF 1999, International Panorama)

Director: Ken Loach

This tale of working class characters caught in a down­ward spiral of their own and society's weaknesses could be considered amongst Ken Loach's best work. As befits his reputation, this is a no holds barred examination of the daily tribulations of marginal personalities. Loach's leading man, Peter Mullan, took home the Best Actor award at Cannes 1998; My Name is Joe was also nominated for the Palme d'Or.

Joe Kavanagh is an alcoholic who we first see addressing an AA meeting after 10 monfhs off the sauce. Without steady employment, Joe gets by doing odd jobs and trying to run a chaotic, no-hopers soccer team. Sarah is a community health worker who offers Joe work wallpapering her flat, a cash job which puts him in trouble with the dole office. When Sarah uses her influence to smooth things over, a cautious romance develops.

Full of emotional grace and warm, humourous observations. Loach's film immediately draws Ihe viewer in. The clarity of his message, a reality for Britain's thou­sands (millions?) on unemployment cuts to the bone. Joe's drinking past, his misguided efforts to help his soccer pals and Sarah's pregnancy conspire to draw him once again into misery and oblivion. A Festival highlight, brought to life with exceptional performances—a challenging and powerful film.

See also...

THE ANGELS' SHARE

Winner of the Jury Prize at Cannes. ... Ken Loach teams up with long-time collaborator Paul Laverty (The Wind That Shakes the Barley, MIFF 06) for The Angels' Share, a funny and affectionate crime ... More »

BREAD AND ROSES

"The locale may have changed but the commitment to challenging social drama remains unwavering in Ken Loach's (My Name is Joe, MIFF 1999) first North American venture. Set in Los Angeles - and ... More »

LOOKING FOR ERIC

Due to circumstances beyond MIFF's control, LOOKING FOR ERIC will no longer screen at the festival. See here for details. ... “Ken Loach in feelgood mode.” - Independent ... Former soccer star ... More »

WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY, THE

FRIDAY 11 AUGUST, 9PM - SOLD OUT ... The Wind that Shakes the Barley was winner of the Palme d'Or at this year's Cannes Film Festival. Both an ardent observer of reality and a deeply committed ... More »

ROUTE IRISH

"Insightful and explosive, so torn from today's headlines it leaves newsprint on your hands." - Empire ... Former soldiers and lifelong friends, Fergus and Frankie, have been growing rich doing ... More »

IT'S A FREE WORLD

“It's also a cruel world, populated by capitalist tools and fools, schemers and dreamers of every stripe, accent and ethnicity.” - The New York Times ... The latest film from socialist and social ... More »

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