Don Cheadle & Brendan Gleeson in "The Guard". Photo by Jonathan Hession
Sundance Film Festival
Director: John Michael McDonagh
Past writer (2003’s “Ned Kelly”) and now first-time director John Michael McDonagh serves up a delicious plate of dark comedy with a side of moving drama in the Irish cop dramedy, "The Guard". Brendan Gleeson (known mostly for his representation of Alastor 'Mad-Eye' Moody in the Harry Potter series) stars as an offensive and selfish Irish police sergeant who doesn’t mind partaking in the finer delicacies of life such as drugs and Dublin prostitutes. Behind the thick-skinned persona, there actually lies a tender and endearing individual. Just don’t ask him to show it without anticipating a severe verbal lashing. When an American FBI agent (Don Cheadle) arrives in the small Irish town in search of a yacht carrying a cargo of $500 million worth of cocaine, an unruly partnership is formed where both will be offended but must work in unison in order to crack the case. McDonagh’s screenplay is as offensive as it is entertaining, and that’s perfectly all right with this critic. No one is safe from his crafty dialogue, not even the children victims at the 1993 Texas Waco Siege. Gleeson is absolutely hilarious with his deadpan routine that never gets stale and leaves everyone craving more, while Cheadle is right there reminding audiences that comedy is yet another acting element his capable of perfecting without fail.