Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director

ORDINARY DECENT CRIMINAL

Ireland / USA / UK / Germany, 1999 (MIFF 2000, International Panorama)

Director: Thaddeus O'Sullivan

The escapades of notorious Irish criminal and folk hero, Martin Cahill, have spawned three films in as many years. John Boorman's excellent The General, followed by Vicious Circle and now Thaddeus O'Sullivan's Ordinary Decent Criminal. Kevin Spacey stars alongside Linda Fiorentino and a cast of outstanding UK talent in this playful but ultimately sobering romp. O'Sullivan has taken some artistic license with the Cahill legend and hence renamed his mischievous villain Michael Lynch. Lynch shares plenty with his real life inspiration: a happy marriage to two sisters, an ongoing feud with the Irish police and a string of outrageous and daring crimes including robbing his own dole office and making off with priceless art treasures in broad daylight. But Ordinary Decent Criminal has more substance than a comedy caper film. Reality and jeopardy come crashing in when Lynch begins to bask in the warm glow of his fame and popularity. He begins to place both his gang and his family in the line of fire when he taunts police once too often and ignores the threats of the IRA. Spacey is typically brilliant in the lead; Peter Muilan (My Name is Joe, MIFF 1999) a stand out as his right-hand man.

See also...

HOTEL SPLENDIDE

UK, 1999
Situated on a remote windswept English island. Hotel Sptendide is accessible only by a monthly ferry Kalh (Toni Collette) arrives, after a five year absence, with a mysterious note urging her to retu… More »

HIGH FIDELITY

USA, 2000
Stephen Frears (My Beautiful Laundrette, The Grifters) teams with John Cusack to bring Nick Hornsby's hysterical bestseller to the screen. Cusack is Rob, an eternal teenager approaching 30. In the mi… More »

NORA

UK, 2000
Nora is the extraordinary true story of James Joyce, the scandalous Irish writer and Nora Barnacle, the simple servant girl who became his lover and muse. Pat Murphy's lavish film chronicles a passio… More »

JESUS' SON

USA, 1999
Filled with stinging humour and standout performances, Jesus' Son is a mixture of road movie and redemptive table set in the drug subculture of the 1970s. Based on Denis Johnson's acclaimed short sto… More »

SONGCATCHER

USA, 1999
"A film about a woman whose drive to pursue the things she believes in leads her on an unexpected path to self-discovery. It is 1907, and musicologist Doctor Lily Penieric (Janet McTeer) has just bee… More »

© Melbourne International Film Festival 2013.

Site by MeccaMedialight. Powered by Textstem CMS.