This adaptation of Roddy Doyle's novel may not display the glitz and relentless energy of The Commitments, but it has wit, feeling and authenticity. The story is tougher and potentially more downbeat - a Dublin family, the Curleys, face a crisis when 20-year-old Sharon (Kellegher) finds herself pregnant but refuses to name the father - nevertheless, there's still enough laconic humour to lift it above dour urban realism. In particular, Colm Meaney shines as the warm, well-meaning dad torn by shame, anger, guilt and pride. Indeed, that tangle of emotions indicates the film's unpretentious complexity as Doyle's script charts the subtle changes in the relationships between family, friends and neighbours. While the film is less obviously feel-good than The Commitments, its final resolution is more thoroughly earned - and, as a result, deeply affecting.
Cast and crew