Credit has run dry

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - FILM REVIEWS -

THE GUAR­AN­TEE Di­rected by Ian Power. Star­ring David Mur­ray, Orla Fitzger­ald, Peter Coo­nan, Mor­gan C Jones, Gary Ly­don. Cert 15A, gen­eral re­lease, 80mins On the night of Septem­ber 29th, 2008, the Ir­ish gov­ern­ment opted to guar­an­tee vir­tu­ally the en­tire do­mes­tic bank­ing sys­tem, a decision that would im­pose ex­tremely harsh fis­cal mea­sures on all cit­i­zens of the State and their chil­dren, and their chil­dren’s chil­dren.

If you’re un­fa­mil­iar with those events, The Guar­an­tee won’t help much. This new drama­ti­sa­tion of a fate­ful evening at Gov­ern­ment Build­ings, based on a play by Colin Murphy, ought to re­sem­ble a Peter Mor­gan ( The Pact, The Queen) film. Or Twelve Angry Men. Or a Hiber­nian Mar­gin Call (which saw a fic­tion­alised Wall Street in­vest­ment bank re­alise, over one thrilling evening, that it is flat­ter than flat broke).

Sadly, The Guar­an­tee does lit­tle or noth­ing to con­vince us that it be­longs in a cin­ema. Through­out, the film strug­gles against a moun­tain of ma­te­rial and the kind of pro­duc­tion bud­get one might ex­pect from a coun­try that opted to vouch for crooked bankers. Cast mem­bers un­wisely and con­fus­ingly dou­ble-job.

The Brechtian no­tion of cast­ing Peter Coo­nan as An­glo Ir­ish Bank ab­scon­der David Drumm and as an equally shad­owy Cen­tral Banker might have worked on stage, but on film it’s a head wreck. There are so many end­less plugs for co-pro­ducer TV3, one half-ex­pects the legend “I only watch it for the ar­ti­cles” to flash across the screen.

Else­where, the gram­mar leans on de­vices that were

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