ⓘ The General (1998 film)

The General (1998 film)

ⓘ The General (1998 film)

The General is an Irish crime film directed by John Boorman about Dublin crime boss Martin Cahill, who pulled off several daring heists in the early 1980s and attracted the attention of the Garda Siochana, IRA, and Ulster Volunteer Force. The film was shot in 1997 and released in 1998. Brendan Gleeson plays Cahill, Adrian Dunbar plays his friend Noel Curley, and Jon Voight plays Inspector Ned Kenny.


1. Plot

After selling stolen paintings to the UVF Cahill realises he has made a dangerous mistake. When the PIRA hear of this, they order his assassination, which is carried out on 18 August 1994.


2. Cast

  • Vinny Murphy as Harry as Vinnie Murphy
  • Sean McGinley as Gary
  • John OToole as Shea
  • Adrian Dunbar as Noel Curley
  • Ned Dennehy as Gay
  • Tommy ONeill as Paddy
  • Brendan Gleeson as Martin Cahill
  • Paul Hickey as Anthony
  • Tom Murphy as Willie Byrne
  • Maria Doyle Kennedy as Frances
  • Eanna MacLiam as Jimmy
  • Angeline Ball as Tina
  • Ciaran Fitzgerald as Tommy
  • Jon Voight as Inspector Ned Kenny
  • Roxanna Williams as Orla

3. Production

The film is based on the book of the same name by Irish journalist Paul Williams, who is "Special Correspondent" for the Irish Independent.

Director Boorman was himself one of Cahills burglary victims. This event is dramatized in a scene in which Cahill breaks into a home, stealing a gold record and pilfering a watch from the wrist of a sleeping woman. The gold record, which Cahill later breaks in disgust after discovering it is not made of gold, was awarded for the score of Deliverance, Boormans best-known film.

Filming was at various locations around Dublin, including South Lotts and Ranelagh.


4. Reception

The General was nominated for and won several awards, including Best Director at the 1998 Cannes Film Festival and the Grand Prix of the Belgian Syndicate of Cinema Critics.

The film holds an approval rating of 82% based on 49 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes.

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