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Intermission (2004)
Rated R

Starring: Cillian Murphy, Colin Farrell, and Colm Meaney

Rating:
****
out of
*****

Intermission is a low-budget Irish film that was released in U.S. theaters during the spring of 2004. It follows the repercussions of the break-up of John (Cillian Murphy) and Dierdre (Kelly Macdonald) as they pass into eleven different storylines.

John feels that he's made a horrible mistake by telling Dierdre that they should take a break for awhile. Dierdre takes up with an older man, a bank manager (Michael McElhatton), who's left his wife (Deirdre O'Kane). Meanwhile, John's friend and co-worker, Oscar (David Wilmot), is trying to find a girlfriend. When Oscar and John lose their supermarket jobs, they meet Lehiff (Colin Farrell), who has a proposition for them.

I've left out some of the details and storylines for the sake of brevity and so as not to spoil the surprises this quirky movie has in store. The script, written by first timer Mark O'Rowe, plays like an episode of Seinfeld by way of the art-house. Elements from one storyline cross into another and back again. It's rather ingenious and a truly involving experience watching the collision of one storyline into the next.

The performances are well-done across the board, with nods of special mention going to Colm Meaney and Shirley Henderson. American audiences may want to turn on the DVD's subtitles to catch some of the dialogue, however. The Irish accents are a bit heavy at times but not so much that you'd miss anything truly important.

If you're looking for something interesting to rent one night, Intermission is a good choice. Just be forewarned, some of the "crime story" elements are a bit violent.

Trivia: The little girl with the ice cream at the beginning of the film is Emma Bolger, who can be seen in In America. (Source: The Internet Movie Database)

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