“In time you’ll come to believe as we do. We’re not fighting faces — we’re fighting uniforms, row after row, standing between Ireland and freedom; remember that.”
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
While Murray isn’t exactly a charismatic protagonist, he’s sufficient as a player in the broader context of Ireland’s underground fight for independence.
Erwin Hillier’s cinematography is highly atmospheric throughout, showcasing a world in which revolutionary operations must necessarily take place in shadowy spaces:
… and the possibility of violence is ever-present.
Cagney’s character is gradually revealed to be a diehard fanatic for his cause, which comes with a cost — particularly as his prejudice against women plays out and becomes his eventual undoing.
Johns is excellent in a supporting but pivotal role as a barmaid eager to stay involved:
… and Wynter is quietly effective as a kidnapped woman who recognizes the power of her beauty and intelligence to (potentially) influence outcomes.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments: