The Treaty

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"It threatened the British Empire, and left the Irish with only each other to fight."
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  • 7.9  (170)

The Treaty is a historical drama movie released in 1991 that sheds light on the negotiation and signing of the Anglo-Irish treaty in 1921, which led to the creation of the Irish Free State in 1922. The movie captures the political environment of the time and the tense negotiations that took place between representatives of the British government and the Irish delegation.

The movie opens with the signing of the ceasefire agreement between the British army and the Irish Republican Army (IRA), which ends the War of Independence. However, the IRA does not disarm, and the Irish delegation is tasked with negotiating a treaty that would give Ireland partial independence from Britain. The primary focus of the movie is the tension and negotiation that takes place between the British and Irish delegations over several weeks with the prospect of civil war looming over their head.

Brendan Gleeson plays Michael Collins, the leader of the Irish delegation and one of the key figures in Irish history. The movie portrays Collins as a charismatic and astute politician with a deep love for his country. He is conflicted about the possibility of accepting a limited independence for Ireland and unleashing a civil war within the country. Gleeson's portrayal captures the complexity of the character and the responsibility that he carries as the Irish representative.

Patrick Condren plays Eamonn de Valera, the president of the Irish Republic and Collins' mentor. He takes a hard stance on the treaty and is unwilling to accept anything less than full independence for Ireland. Condren plays de Valera with a sense of authority and stubbornness that adds to the tension between the Irish and British delegations.

Ian Bannen plays David Lloyd George, the British prime minister at the time. He is portrayed as a shrewd politician who is willing to negotiate but plays his cards close to his chest. Bannen's portrayal enhanced the tense atmosphere of the negotiations, with his character's every move being scrutinized by the Irish delegation.

The Treaty accurately depicts the challenges faced by the Irish delegation in negotiating the treaty. The limitations of the Irish mandate and the intense pressure to avoid a civil war in the country weighed heavily on the delegation. The movie also shows the political constraints on both the British and Irish delegations, with each side having to navigate their own political landscape.

The movie is well shot, with the majority of the action taking place within the rooms where the negotiations occur. The sets and costumes accurately reflect the time period, with the filmmakers paying close attention to the details of the political environment of the early 20th century. The dialogue is well-written and captures the personalities of the lead characters.

Overall, The Treaty is a well-made historical drama that offers insight into the key players and events that led to the creation of the Irish Free State. The movie captures the tension and drama of the negotiations, and the performances of the lead actors are superb. It is a must-see for anyone interested in Irish history or political drama.

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    7.9  (170)