The Field (1990) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Field (1990)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Richard Harris was nominated for several awards (including the Oscar and Golden Globe) for his performance in The Field. The time is the mid-1930s; the place, western Ireland. For many years rugged individualist Bull McCabe (Harris) has been cultivating a small plot of rented land, nurturing it from barren rock into a fertile field. Now, however, the widow who owns the land plans to sell it at auction. The infuriated Bull shows up at the bidding, secure in his belief that none of his neighbors will dare bid against him. But Bull has not taken into consideration a wealthy Irish-American (Tom Berenger), who intends to pave over the land and bring new industry to the area. "This is deep, very deep, deeper than you think" warns Bull, as he sends his grown son (Sean Bean) to "persuade" the American to withdraw his bid. Armed with the foreknowledge that Bull's tenacity has caused heartbreak and tragedy in the past, the audience steels itself for the awful consequences still to come. Punctuating the storyline are the periodic appearances of the toothless village idiot, played by John Hurt. Originally produced for British television, The Field was based on the landmark play by John B. Keane, and directed by My Left Foot's Jim Sheridan.
Art House & International , Drama
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Richard Harris
as 'Bull' McCabe
John Hurt
as Bird
Tom Berenger
as Peter - The American
Sean Bean
as Tadgh
Brenda Fricker
as Maggie McCabe
Jer O'Leary
as Tinker Girl's Father
John Cowley
as Flanagan
Ronan Wilmot
as Tinker
Aine Ni Mhuiri
as Priest's Housekeeper
Jenny Conroy
as Tinker Girl
Sean McGinley
as Father Doran
Malachy McCourt
as Sergeant
Eamon Keane
as Dan Paddy Andy
Sara Jane Scaife
as McRoarty Girl
David Wilmot
as Boy at Dance
Peadar Lamb
as Paddy Joe O'Reilly
Aine Ni Mhuire
as Priest's Housekeeper
Maurtin Jaimsie
as Villager
Tom Jordan
as Villager
Bina McLoughlin
as Villager
Joan Sheehy
as 2nd Tinker Woman
Ruth McCabe
as Tinker Woman
Rachel Dowling
as Girl at Dance
Sarah Cronin
as Girl at Dance
Frank McDonald
as Quarryman
Brendan Gleeson
as Quarryman
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Critic Reviews for The Field

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (6)

The Field is a movie that all too often reveals its origins as a play.

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

As overwrought as [My Left Foot] was understated.

May 12, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic

Sheridan seems out in left field here, undone by the sheer hokum of the material.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Washington Post
Top Critic

A painfully overwrought combination of A Touch of the Poet and Zorba the Greek.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Washington Post
Top Critic

The Field is a grim allegory of hard life on the land -- a symbolic play, transplanted uneasily to the greater realism of the film medium, where what we might accept on the stage now looks contrived and artificial.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

One of Jim Sheridan's weakest and most propagandistic films, this Iriah social melodrama was made between two highlights: My Left Foot and In the Name of the Father.

Full Review… | August 18, 2007

Audience Reviews for The Field

A nice film with strong performances from Richard Harris, Sean Bean, John Hurt, and Brenda Flicker. Great score and cinematography too

Kyle Bailey
Kyle Bailey

This film explores similar themes to Manon of the Spring and Jean de Florette. Those films do it far more effectively. Harris is fantastic as could be expected. Any shortcomings are not attributable to him.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer


Superb performance by Harris. Well worth watching, and the bad reviewers shouldbe ashamed of themselves. If only for Harris's powerhouse performance, this is worth viewing.

Mike Bierman
Mike Bierman

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