Mary Poppins Returns
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All Critics (61)
| Top Critics (16)
| Fresh (47)
| Rotten (14)
| DVD (4)
The Butcher Boy is a trip, all right, but one that I'm sorry I took.
The movie is well-crafted and tightly assembled, but it's also loud and unmodulated.
Director Neil Jordan and Patrick McCabe adapted McCabe's novel for this bland 1998 shocker that fails miserably as satire, character study, and anything else it might have aspired to.
Though the movie sometimes looks as if the authentic Irish wit, colour and blarney has been filtered through the sensibility of a Buñuel or Polanski, Jordan never allows the surreal/expressionist aspects to dominate.
Neil Jordan's most accomplished and brilliant film to date, Butcher Boy is satisfying as faithful literary adaptation and inense cinematic experience that brings to mind in theme Kubrick's equally brilliant Cloakwork Orange.
I find myself in an embarrassing position: I think this is a great movie, but I'm not sure.
...clumsily lurches from one irrelevant, uninteresting episode to the next...
Owens' remarkable, high-pitched performance and Jordan's lush, visionary style are perfectly suited to the material.
Intensely colourful, but somehow soulless.
A horrific tale of madness and abuse told with pop-eyed color and giddy humor.
The film almost immediately loses the major asset of the novel: its language. Possibly a quarter of the movie is incomprehensible to the American ear.
The film's horrific conclusion is as uncompromising as it is inevitable and, unfortunately, ever-more topical.
Sharp and snappy dialogue, surprising emotional weight, and the perfect and crucial casting of Eamoon Owens (who completely owns the screen) create an unforgettable character study; dark, funny, and full of life. Unique to it's core, and one of Jordan 's best films.
Jordan's whimsical but dark presentation of a boy gradually becoming psychotic is perfectly disturbing. It captures both the fun and naiveness of childhood, but also details the simple slip from mischievous trouble making into something far less wholesome. Owens gives an amazing performance, he plays it as a child the entire time. One of the most disturbing things is that he doesn't act disturbed. It's a child playing games, feeling betrayed and ultimately doing the only sensible (in his mind) thing to counteract the events in his life. A wonderful mix of a movie, that should have reached it's conclusion sooner.
Neil Jordan's 1997 film The Butcher Boy has striking similarities to Truffaut's The 400 Blows as well as Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange, though with much more satire if that's possible. Even if it's nowhere close to being as brilliant as those mentioned, Jordan's film is very good.
Possibly the most cheerful film ever made about abusive childhoods, alienation, sexual abuse, madness and murder and should be noted for the simple fact of being the first film in the renaissance of Irish cinema during the 1990s not to be centered around sectarian violence.
A really disturbing film from Neil Jordan. I think the difficult subject matter made this into an unmarketable film but when the mood is right...give it a look.
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