The Banshees of Inisherin
I wanted this to be a riveting, entertaining film. Once again, I was disappointed.
Let me start by saying that I am a big fan of Irish writer-director Martin McDonagh. One of my favorite films in the last 5 years was Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017). Unfortunately, despite occasional caustic humor, Banshees lacked Billboards excruciating torment.
With this film, McDonagh tells the story of two old friends parting company on a small island off the Irish Coast in 1923. Colm (Brendan Gleeson) has become bored with Padraic (Colin Farrell) and he threatens to cut off one of his fingers if Padraic says one more word to him.
And there you have the movie’s story line. Padraic, a sheep farmer who lives with his sister (Kerry Condon), doesn’t understand Colm’s anger. He just wants to have their daily pint of beer, while Colm prefers to be left alone so he can play his violin.
As was the case with Tar, many critics rave about this film, and I don’t understand their admiration. Maybe the fault lies with me as I had trouble understanding much of the Irish dialogue. For people with hearing problems like me, the film would have benefited from sub-titles.
What hurt this film is that you really didn’t know the reason Colm sought to end their friendship. Despite some wonderful performances and a bit of humor, it was hard to care about these two boring friends.
I’ll close by saying several fingers are cut off that result in drastic consequences. It was a pity that most of you won’t care.