peteg's blog - noise - movies - 2019 11 20 TheVirtues

The Virtues

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A Stephen Graham jag from The Irishman. Here he is another kind of Irishman who sports a Scouser accent in a very Shane Meadows TV production. The high rating at IMDB suggests there are still a lot of This is England fans out there.

At its core this touches on some of the classic Irish concerns: boozing, underage pregnancy, child abuse, broken families and unbreakable connections of blood, forgiveness, the Church. I don't know if Meadows has anything new to say on any of these topics; the drama is a bit too predictable, with people turning up just in time to say their piece. Niamh Algar may go far. Helen Behan did a decent job of a thankless role. Frank Laverty can take over from Liam Neeson anytime. The ending is open so perhaps there will be successor seasons considering more of the Irish canon.