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Some Mother's Son

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Some Mother's Son

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Are you ready for yet another film about trouble in Northern Ireland? If not, be sure to avoid this one, which is less a movie than a decidedly slanted history lesson. Despite being produced by the folks who brought you In The Name Of The Father, Some Mother's Son has none of that movie's strengths. Where Father chose an example of political injustice and skillfully incorporated universal themes such as the relationships between fathers and sons, Mother chooses a hunger strike for the right to wear civilian clothes in prison. If it is possible to make the death of 10 men over the issue seem anything but pointless, the movie fails to do so. It also fails to make the prisoners humans, instead creating martyrs complete with long hair and beards—and leaving an understated and affecting performance by Helen Mirren, as a prisoner's mother, dangling in the wind. While Father integrated political and dramatic elements into a movie with almost universal appeal, Some Mother's Son seems to have been made with only political-science professors and the movie-of-the-week crowd in mind.