“The Guard” Funny, but Difficult
“Funny, but Difficult”
“Hotshots” looks at a movie!
The Guard is one of the funniest movies you will see all year, but it is also one of the most difficult to understand, too, because it takes place in Ireland, and although the characters speak English for the most part, their accents are unfamiliar to American ears.
I say “for the most part,” because one scene has characters speaking Gaelic, but it also contains subtitles for the audience’s benefit.
The story takes place in County Galway, in western Ireland, and Brendan Gleeson plays Sgt. Gerry Boyle, who prides himself as being “the last of the independents,” although the criminals in the story call him “unpredictable” and for good reason.
For example, when Sgt. Boyle and his new partner investigate a murder, Sgt. Boyle says that the victim looks like Brendan Foley. But then when the partner remarks that they know who the victim is, Sgt. Boyle says, “I said he looked like Brendan Foley. I didn’t say he was Brendan Foley.”
And then Special Agent Wendell Everett comes to town from the United States. He is played by Don Cheadle, and the authorities have been tracking a ship carrying half-a-billion dollars worth of cocaine on board, which they suspect will dock somewhere in western Ireland to unload the drugs.
The fact that Agent Everett is black gives Sgt. Boyle the opportunity to make some outrageous racist comments, but then Sgt. Boyle makes an excuse by saying that he is Irish and racism is part of his culture.
However, as Agent Everett points out, Sgt. Boyle could very easily be very dumb or very smart.
Eventually we learn that Sgt. Boyle is much smarter than he appears to be and also smarter than he acts.
We also follow the gang of drug traffickers who are waiting for the ship to arrive, and their interaction is just as funny as the interaction among Sgt. Boyle, Agent Everett, and the rest of the police force.
At one point you might think that there are too many side stories going on, but they all tie in together neatly at the end, which involves one of the funniest shoot-outs you will ever see.
The Guard is funny, it is difficult, but it is so good that you just might have to see it more than once to enjoy it all the more.
I’m Dan Culberson and this is “Hotshots.