The Banshees of Inisherin (Martin McDonagh – 2022) A+

I have to get how absolutely stunning looking this film is out of the way first thing. It is gorgeous with each frame, indoors or outdoors, that can be a prime candidate for a framed painting. On this fictitious island we start off with a quirky simple story where the older Colm (Brendan Gleeson) tells his buddy Padraic (Colin Farrell) that he does not want to be friends no more. No particular reason. The island is tiny, the community is even smaller. There is one pub. Colm believes Padraic is dull, life is too short and he cannot continue wasting the few years he has left talking about nothing with Padraic. It escalates. The town as I said is small. Everyone seems to be invested in this little conflict since Padraic does not really take this lightly. They are sure more invested in this than whatever is happening on the main land (civil war really). They get this more. McDonagh gives us some laughs for sure but what he is telling is a deeply human story about life, choices and what really matters in the end. Padraic might be “dull” and not very well read but as he says in a masterful drunken monologue, who gives a shit about that at the end of the day. Does it not matter that he is nice, and will be remembered as such?

I have not even touched on the supporting characters in this masterpiece. Padraic’s sister, played by Kerry Condon, is the sharpest person on this idyllic island. She delivers an amazing performance. She is the brains and logic of this place that is not quiet shed it’s superstitious roots. We have a stand-in equivalent of a witch in the character of Mrs. McCormick. They even think she is a witch. Maybe she is. Another amazing character and performance is the sweet, and perhaps too honest, Dominic Kearny. The actor, Barry Keoghan, steals every scene he is in and breaks our heart with his story. This is a wonderful movie, one that is not easy to forget and that I suspect will be worth mining every few years. The older I get.

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