Up until now, it‚(TM)s been a pretty amazing year for Irish film. The Irish film industry has had success after success. Enjoyable movie, after enjoyable movie. And I‚(TM)m really glad to say that trend is now continuing, thanks to Parked.
It‚(TM)s the story of Fred (Colm Meaney) who lives in his car, in a seaside car park. A man of few words and at the same time a man who‚(TM)s face tells a thousand tales. In between failed attempts at signing on the dole and successful fiddling with clocks, Fred‚(TM)s existence is as barren as the ocean landscape he see‚(TM)s through his windscreen. That is until Cathal (Colin Morgan) turns up, complete with his own car and drug addiction. Cathal almost instantaneously brightens up Fred‚(TM)s bleak little world and the two become close friends, getting into a scrape or 2 along the way. As they grow closer, Cathal encourages Fred to ask out Jules, an attractive music teacher, and at the same time Fred attempts to get Cathal clean and sober.
There‚(TM)s only one way to describe Parked. And that‚(TM)s mesmerizing. Firstly, this isn‚(TM)t the type of role many people are used to seeing Colm Meaney in. Whilst Parked has a few comedic moments, these are quite natural, and not in the usual ‚Jaaayyyyssssuuuussss‚? Meaney style. His face just sucks you into his world and within the first few minutes, you are genuinely feeling sorry for character and are completely rooting for him. At times, Colm Meaney‚(TM)s performance is almost hypnotic. It‚(TM)s almost like a real life documentary at times, and that is testament to a really, award winning performance. I‚(TM)d go as far as saying, it‚(TM)s Meany‚(TM)s best performance to date. His on screen counterpart is played by Colin Morgan, who again, is equally outstanding. His portrayal of a junkie is incredibly honest and heart warming at times. And if there was ever a huge star in the making, Morgan is it.
At 94 minutes, Parked isn‚(TM)t exactly what you‚(TM)d call a long movie. But, man, do you get value for money. There‚(TM)s not a moment goes by where it‚(TM)s not evoking some emotion out of the audience. It‚(TM)s gripping. It‚(TM)s heart warming and heart breaking. It‚(TM)s incredibly well timed, given the current economic climate . And for me, and I don‚(TM)t know why, there is something genuinely magical seeing Colm Meaney on the streets of Dublin (albeit short lived). From a directorial point, Darragh Byrne seems to make every second count and the performances he has gotten out his cast is phenomenal.
It‚(TM)s a movie that tragically, won‚(TM)t be for everybody as It is quite dark, in tone and style. If I had to be really critical, I would have like to get a bit more background to Meaney‚(TM)s character and it feels slightly rushed towards the end. That aside, this is a movie that will have a profound effect on the those who go to see it. And whilst it‚(TM)s not something I‚(TM)d be rushing out to watch again, it leaves such a mark, it doesn‚(TM)t matter. It‚(TM)ll be parked in your head for some time to come! A must watch!