Thursday 21 September 2017

Breezy Irish tale of family, death and a million euro

Treasure hunt: A family search for their eccentric Nan's life savings, hidden in her old matress, in moving Irish drama Life's a Breeze
Treasure hunt: A family search for their eccentric Nan's life savings, hidden in her old matress, in moving Irish drama Life's a Breeze

Gavin Burke

Life's a Breeze (12A, general release, 83 minutes)

 

DIRECTOR: LANCE DALY STARS: PATT SHORTT, FIONNULA FLANAGAN, EVA BIRTHISTLE, BRIAN GLEESON

3 STARS

After a brief sojourn stateside to put Orlando Bloom through his paces for the warmly received drama The Good Doctor (which wasn't released this side of the water), Irish writer-director Lance Daly, who impressed with Kisses, returns home for this light comedy-drama.

The grand dame of Irish cinema Fionnula Flanagan plays Nan, a grouchy pensioner who doesn't mind the clutter that clogs up the rooms and stairs of her ramshackle home.

Live-in, dole-signing son Colm (Pat Shortt) doesn't share those views, and rounds up his siblings for a thorough spring clean.

However, Nan's overzealous children throw out her old mattress, which, she tells her aghast offspring, hid her life's savings of close to a million euro – "Sure, who'd trust a bank these days?"

Colm heads up a search of military proportions before word gets out and the masses descend on the local dumps.

Like he showed with his tween tearaways in Kisses, Daly likes his oddball pairings and delivers another in Flanagan and newcomer Kelly Thornton, playing her teenage loner granddaughter.

While Daly resists the temptation to roll out the clichés of the grouchy mentor/bitchy heroine storyline, and the partnership offers up the best scene in the movie (a moving speech about Flanagan's deceased husband), there's a feeling that this touching relationship could have been mined for more drama.

Gavin Burke

Irish Independent

Editors Choice

Also in Entertainment