'71 (2015)


Critic Consensus: Powerfully directed and acted, '71 stays true to its fact-based origins while remaining as gripping as any solidly crafted action thriller.


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Movie Info

'71 takes place over a single night in the life of a young British soldier (Jack O'Connell) accidentally abandoned by his unit following a riot on the streets of Belfast in 1971. Unable to tell friend from foe, and increasingly wary of his own comrades, he must survive the night alone and find his way to safety through a disorientating, alien and deadly landscape. (C) Roadside Attractions

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Jack O'Connell
as Gary Hook
Sean Harris
as Captain sandy Browning
Jack Lowden
as Thompson ("Thommo")
Paul Anderson (XVIII)
as Sergeant Leslie Lewis
Martin McCann
as Paul Haggerty
Killian Scott
as James Quinn
Paul Popplewell
as Training Corporal
Babou Ceesay
as Corporal
Corey McKinley
as Loyalist Child
Valene Kane
as Spitting Woman
Ben Peel
as Ruc Man
Gerard Jordan
as Huge man/Lillian Hughes
Sam Reid
as Lt. Armitage
Dawn Bradfield
as Sean's Mum
Liam McMahon
as O'Brien
Ben Williams-Lee
as Recruit Soldier
Jonah Russell
as Barracks Officer
James McArdle
as Sergeant
Andy Moore
as Ruc Man (Bathroom)
Amy Molloy
as Mother In Raided House
Aaron Lynch
as Young Boy At Riot
Tom Cowling
as Large Soldier
Eabha MacCabe
as Sean's Little Sister
Emmet Kirwan
as Gang Member 2
Barry Barnes
as Jake Fullarton
Chris Patrick Simpson
as Older Loyalist Man
Terence Keeley
as Young Loyalist Man
Jim Sturgeon
as Sergeant John Vickers
Cathy White
as Good Samaritan
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News & Interviews for '71

Critic Reviews for '71

All Critics (133) | Top Critics (35)

'71 makes so much effort to be suspenseful that it doesn't have much time to get into nuance.

Oct 14, 2015 | Full Review…

The film doesn't take sides, but shows how conflict stirs the pot of human emotions and how quickly things can get out of control. And it shows that in war, no one is right.

Mar 13, 2015 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

Demange's feature debut miraculously distills the often Byzantine nature of the power politics behind The Troubles in a deeply intimate chamber piece about a single day in the life of a British soldier.

Mar 13, 2015 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

People died, but it's more than the bombs, bullets and bodies. The more fascinating damage was done to psyches and souls, and Demange, with '71, comes for yours.

Mar 13, 2015 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

The movie excites, but intelligently, without stoking blood lust or Old Testament revenge impulses.

Mar 12, 2015 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

If you are in the mood for a confusing and thoroughly depressing immersion into Irish history, you can't do better. But that would be a very odd mood to be in.

Mar 12, 2015 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for '71


Once I passed the triteness of its opening and closing parts and some conveniences of the plot, I couldn't feel any other way but astound by the pace and gripping cinéma vérité style of newcomer Yann Demange. Paranoia, rage, discomfort or panic are some of the myriad of emotions dexteriously captured to give substance to a survival drama that in some other hands wouldn't be as effective or thrilling. The cast is also responsible for the achievement in realism and suspense.

Pierluigi Puccini
Pierluigi Puccini

Super Reviewer


With a visual approach that makes it resemble a documentary, this realistic thriller is highly gripping as a series of tense situations faced by a man caught in a political battle, but it is only a pity, though, that the film makes some odd narrative choices in the end.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

A newbie soldier sent to Dublin during The Troubles gets separated from his unit while in hostile territory and must make his way back or die. What's interesting is the tension between those simply trying to survive versus the ruthlessness of policy makers. The movie fan me kept waiting for the soldier to be more proactive, ala John Wayne, and was constantly disappointed. And the ending is too predictable.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

A remarkable and compelling tale of a British soldier left behind rebel lines in a 1970's Northern Ireland rife with corruption and treason. The impact of the violence and extremist views on future generations is artfully and smartly played out making "'71" an effective message flick. Good costumes, sets and very good, engrossing acting by up-and-comer Jack O'Connell make this period film well worth watching.

Christian C
Christian C

Super Reviewer


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