The Wind That Shakes the Barley ★★★½

This movie packs an undeniable visceral punch. That does, however, seem to be the film's primary mission. It's never too concerned with plot or character, or anything else, for that matter. I barely knew anybody's names or anything about them apart from whether they were for this or against that. It felt less like a movie and more like a peek into real life. This was a blessing and a curse; a blessing because it helped deliver that emotional impact, a curse because I never felt like I was a part of what the characters in the story were going through. I felt totally like an outsider, watching this crazy series of events transpire from a safe distance. It's not my preferred method of cinematic storytelling, but for what it is, it works.

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