Ken Loach’s latest slice of life from the British isles is based on the true story of Jimmy Gralton, an activist deported from Ireland for political agitation who returns in 1932 to reopen his community hall. Trouble, with “mother church” and other forces of oppression, follows.
Jimmy’s Hall is opening this week in limited release. My review is at Film Racket:
Wearing a big progressive heart on its union-made sleeve, Jimmy’s Hall could easily have been a carefree lark about good times and toothless rebellion, if it had been directed by somebody besides Ken Loach. Another filmmaker, one without a political vertebrae to speak of, could have conjured up a piece of twee Irish fun that would have been twice as fun to watch but several times more pointless. Loach does have a thing for speeches. While they drag the film to a halt more than once, there’s a bright and touching sincerity running throughout that makes that wandering stodginess not matter so much…
Here’s the trailer: