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Evelyn (2002)

Directed by:

Bruce Beresford

Rating: 6/10

Running Time: 94 minutes

UK Certificate: pg

Country: United States

The true story of a father who battles against the prejudices and power of the church and state in 1950s Ireland, for the return of his children to his care after his wife walks out on their family for another man.

Evelyn is a film full of heart-breaking moments that show the remarkable strength of Desmond Doyle in his fight for the return of his daughter Evelyn and his sons; carried through only by his love for his children. Throughout Desmond's struggle we are given our fair share of light hearted moments to ease the tension. The humour contained within Evelyn's court appearance is one of the film's most memorable scenes.

This film gives a scathing portrayal of the 1950s Catholic Church in Ireland; and the power which it was able to exert. Sophie Vavasseur gives a strikingly convincing performance as Evelyn, the young girl separated from her father, and sent to live in a convent. It is a shame that the same cannot be said about Pierce Brosnan in his role as Desmond. Although born in Ireland, Brosnan's attempts at a natural Irish accent leave much to be desired. It takes a lot of effort to suspend one's image of him as 007 agent James Bond; and his mediocre performance in 'Evelyn' does not help matters. Young Sophie Vavasseur is the real star of this film.

Evelyn is well worth a look. When an elderly lady across from you in the cinema cries, claps her hands, and waves her arms in the air; you realise just how much of an impact this film has on its audience and how much affection they hold for its characters.

Film endings must satisfy the audience, and Evelyn's does just that… and more!,

It's Got: An ample amount of humour and lightness.

It Needs: Greater focus on the two sons. They speak at no point during the film.

Alternatives:

The Magdalene Sisters

Summary

A true celebration of inner strength.

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