D.J. Haza presents the next entry in his series of films to watch before you die…
The Crying Game, 1992.
Directed by Neil Jordan.
Starring Stephen Rea, Jaye Davidson, Miranda Richardson, Forest Whitaker, Jim Broadbent, Ralph Brown and Tony Slattery.
The Crying Game is Neil Jordan’s sensational psychological thriller about an IRA footsoldier who, after the killing of a British soldier, decides to visit his girlfriend in London and strikes up an unexpected romance fraught with difficulties and complications. The film won Jordan an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay and became a sleeper hit in the US, earning £39 million off its tiny £2.3 million budget.
Fergus (Rea) is the IRA man charged with keeping an eye on British soldier Jody (Whitaker) as the group hold him hostage. As the two men talk, a bond builds between them; Jody tells Fergus about his girlfriend back in London, Dil (Davidson), and makes him promise that if anything ever happened to him Fergus would look after her.
When Jody is killed trying to escape Fergus decides to honour his promise and heads to London. As Fergus makes contact with Dil and tries to build a friendship, he finds himself falling for her and wanting more and more to protect her for his own reasons rather than his promise. With the IRA tracking Fergus down and demanding he return to his work for them, things become even more complicated. Fergus finds himself in a tough place trying to decide what he wants and how he can continue the rest of his life after making his decision.
The Crying Game starts out feeling like one film with a particular story and theme, but soon begins to twist and turn and becomes more complicated, with the characters’ choices increasingly more difficult to make. By the end of the film the journey you have witnessed becomes something that you really weren’t expecting. Critically acclaimed for its brave and unflinching look at sexuality, nationality, race and gender, the film is bold and quite beautiful in its own way.
The Crying Game is a film you must see before you die as the twist in the story hits you like a slap in the face and your jaw will drop as you re-evaluate everything you had been thinking up until the big reveal.