Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.
United Kingdom/Ireland/USA, 1996. Warner Bros., Geffen Pictures. Screenplay by Neil Jordan. Cinematography by Chris Menges.Produced by Stephen Woolley. Music by Elliot Goldenthal. Production Design by Anthony Pratt. Costume Design by Sandy Powell. Film Editing by J. Patrick Duffner, Tony Lawson.
Beautifully photographed biopic by Neil Jordan about the Irish hero who led fellow IRA members to a harsh battle against his country’s enemies, before being assassinated and reborn a legend who is still discussed by his compatriots to this day. Liam Neeson makes an excellent Collins, an optimistic youth who became a hard-driven soldier fighting with his every bit of strength to see his country become as free as it was in his dreams. A formidable cast including Aidan Quinn, Alan Rickman and Jordan’s mainstay actor Stephen Rea also stars, plus a wonderful supporting performance by Julia Roberts as Collins’ lady love. Magnificent score by Elliot Goldenthal and a fantastic feel for the period overcome some of the film’s duller moments, one that is a great tribute to the people whose stories it tells.
Academy Award Nominations: Best Cinematography; Best Original Score-Drama
Golden Globe Award Nominations: Best Actor-Drama (Liam Neeson); Best Original Score
Toronto International Film Festival: 1996
Venice Film Festival Awards: Golden Lion; Best Actor (Liam Neeson)