Jimmy's Hall

Watch Jimmy's Hall

  • PG-13
  • 2014
  • 1 hr 49 min
  • 6.7  (6,819)
  • 63

Jimmy's Hall is a 2014 British-Irish drama film directed by Ken Loach, and written by Paul Laverty. It tells the story of Irish communist leader Jimmy Gralton, who in the early 1930s returns to his home country after a decade of exile in the United States. Back in Ireland, Jimmy reopens the community hall that he had built years earlier, and begins using it to teach local youths about socialism and workers' rights. However, Jimmy's activities attract the attention of the conservative church and state authorities, who see his presence as a threat to their power.

The film is set in County Leitrim, a rural area in the northwest of Ireland, and takes place during a time of political and social upheaval. The country is still reeling from the aftermath of the War of Independence and the Civil War, and is now under the control of the conservative Fianna Fáil government. The Catholic Church, which has always played a powerful role in Irish society, is also keen to maintain its influence, and sees Jimmy's teaching of socialist ideas as a direct attack on their doctrines.

The main character, played by Barry Ward, is a complex figure who is driven by a strong sense of justice and a desire for liberation. Jimmy is someone who has seen the best and worst of America, and now wants to bring the progressive ideas he has encountered back to his home country. He is a passionate orator and a charismatic figure, who soon gains a following among the local youths. However, his growing popularity and radical ideas also make him a target of the church and state authorities, who see him as a threat to their power.

The film focuses on Jimmy's struggle to keep the hall open, and the obstacles he faces from both the church and state. Among the local authorities intent on shutting him down is Father Sheridan (played by Jim Norton), a religious leader who is determined to maintain control over his parishioners. Another antagonist is the local police inspector (played by Francis Magee), who is tasked with keeping an eye on Jimmy and his activities.

Despite the opposition, Jimmy and his followers persevere, organizing dances, concerts, and other cultural events in the hall. They also discuss socialist ideas and the pressing issues of the day, such as workers' rights and land reform. The film beautifully captures the sense of community that develops around the hall, and the joy that these events bring to the local people.

The film also explores the personal relationships that develop between Jimmy and those around him. He is particularly close to Oonagh (played by Simone Kirby), a widowed mother who shares his passion for social justice, and whose son is one of his most dedicated followers. There is also a romantic subplot between Jimmy and Marie (played by Aileen Henry), a former flame who re-enters his life when he returns to Ireland.

Throughout the film, the Irish landscape is portrayed with stunning beauty, especially the rolling green hills and the misty shores of the Atlantic. The film's music is also notable, featuring traditional Irish songs and ballads that add to its emotional power.

Overall, Jimmy's Hall is a moving and thought-provoking film that explores an important chapter in Irish history, and the struggle of one man to bring change to his community. It is a testament to the power of community organizing, and a reminder of the importance of maintaining cultural traditions in the face of oppression.

Jimmy's Hall is a 2014 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 49 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.7 and a MetaScore of 63.

Jimmy's Hall
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 49 min
  • IMDB Rating
    6.7  (6,819)
  • Metascore