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BLOODY SUNDAY

UK / Ireland, 2001 (MIFF 2002, International Panorama)

Director: Paul Greengrass

On Sunday 30 January 1972 a British paratrooper unit shot dead 13 unarmed civilians taking part in a march for peace in Derry, Northern Ireland. Thirty years later, the killers still haven't got their story straight. Writer-director Paul Greengrass has made a damning, nail-biting, heart-wrenching film recounting the events of that single fateful day.

At Sundance the film won the Audience Award for World Cinema. Highly skilled filmmaking has revived memories of one of the worst moments in the history of Northern Ireland's struggle for peace. The director's gritty documentary style develops a powderkeg atmosphere prior to the now notorious clash. He cuts between military preparations and those of the march organisers, including some frighteningly testosterone-pumped paratroopers keen to depart Ireland in a cloud of gunsmoke.

"Forget about the controversy: this is visceral, rocket-fuelled filmmaking. It has a cracking performance from James Nesbitt as the harassed idealist leading a would-be peaceful march, his smiling face turning into a mask of horror. Greengrass' film demands to be seen." - The Guardian

Paul Greengrass has split his career between film and television, often focusing on controversial historical incidents. Since his 1989 debut, Resurrected, he has directed seven films including Open Fire (1994), The Fix (1997) and The Murder of Stephen Lawrence (1999).

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