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Scott Ventura >> Movie Commentary >> March 1999 >> Waking Ned Devine

Waking Ned Devine

Movie Commentary by Scott Ventura


Scott's Rating:
4 / 5
Times Seen:
Viewing Dates on Record:
March 1999, April 2000
IMDB Name:
Waking Ned Devine (1998)
Kirk Jones
MPAA Rating:
PG for nudity, language and thematic elements.


Waking Ned Devine is a movie with a little bit of magic to it. I'm almost certain that the charm inherent in the Irish, and exaggerated by the small town life, would be hard to pull off in any other setting. Even when I wished for subtitles at the beginning while waiting to adapt to the accent, I was still dazzled by the dialogue.

Delicate Touch

As an aficionado of American humor spanning every televised genre, I have built up certain expectations for how a situation in a comedy will resolve itself. Popular techniques include the idiot plot and slapstick. Mercifully, all of my predictions were wrong. How wonderful it is to start laughing early about the joke that is on the way, then get to laugh again because the joke is handled differently. The Kirk Jones script has just enough unpredictability to it to keep the tension up, making the humor that much sweeter.

There is an outstanding sincerity brought to the entire movie by the entire cast. David Kelly, Ian Bannen, and Fionnula Flanagan get the most screen time and earn the most laughter. They really do interact as a trio of lifelong friends from a small town. Supporting roles like those played by Susan Lynch, James Nesbitt, Brendan Dempsey, and Robert Hickey flesh out the town and help build affection for the citizens of Tullymore.

Man, what an Isle!

Sorry. I couldn't resist the opportunity to make a pun like that. Waking Ned Devine was shot entirely on the Isle of Man. When the helicopters take the camera aloft and show the Isle from off shore, it's a majestic site indeed. I've now seen parts of Ireland with my own eyes, and seeing the aerial photography on the big screen is the closest thing to the incredible feeling of being there. I'll have to add Man to my itinerary the next time.

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Copyright 1999-2001 by Scott Ventura. All rights reserved.