Title: Bad Day For the Cut
Director: Chris Baugh.
Genre: Action, Comedy, Gangster.
Main Cast: Nigel O’Neill, Susan Lynch, Josef Pawlowski.
Runtime: 99 mins.
IMDb rating: 6.5/10.
My rating: 7/10.
Quick summary: A quirky but gory look at a mild mannered farmer who loses the one thing keeping him sane…His mammy. Violence galore and cultural clashes make this film an enjoyable one. It’s on Netflix so head on over.
Donal, played by Nigel O’Neill, is a middle aged farmer living in the countryside near Belfast. His quiet existence of living under his mother’s thumb is rocked when she is murdered in their home. Donal himself is targeted two nights later. After killing one assailant and taking the other one captive, Donal sets off towards Belfast city to find out more about his mother’s killing.
Donal, his Polish attacker Bartosz (Pawlowski) and Bartosz’ sister Kaja go on a meek but unmerciful rampage against those who robbed Donal of his mother. He might just find out some things he’d rather he didn’t.
This is a sort of hidden gem on Netflix. It caught my eye immediately and I’m so glad I turned it on. It captures the predicament of many rural Irish adults and farmers especially; do they leave and do their own thing or stay in the family house and take care of elderly parents?
Donal is devoted to his mother and despite her abruptness with him we see their tight bond and her love for him. Obviously he takes her death hard. The attempt on his life by two inept attackers, from the same crowd that killed his mother as it turns out, spurs him on to find out the truth once and for all and exact revenge.
The movie moves along at a nice pace. We are brought all over Belfast in an hour and a half of action. While the action is impressive and varied, it is the individual performances of the actors and the development of their characters that give this movie such a high score for me. Donal has lived in the countryside all his life while Bartosz, attacker turned friend, has lived in Poland and Ireland and is several years younger. There is a brilliant scene where the younger man explains mobile phones to Donal, the older man getting visibly annoyed with the technology. The fact that this light hearted moment is immediately followed by Donal daring his life to go and rescue Bartosz’ sister, Kaja, makes it a much more solid showing of the bond that has grown between the two.
I am a great fan of all things Irish, especially Irish art and creative productions. If an Irish film is done well it is a breath of fresh air. While this film shows small town life, it also invests in the human relationships that are vital to us and give us life. Donal may have been feeling a bit of wanderlust with his new van at the beginning of the movie. I wager that by the end he had had enough of travelling and meeting new people for quite some time. Typically Irish, if you ask me! Rave on about travelling and lament your home in the country once you’re out and about 🤣
The film ends on something of a cliffhanger which I’m afraid to say I wasn’t a fan of in this instance. I know that Donal is fed up of fighting and just wants to go back to his cottage but the dilemma he faces at the end is too easy to solve. I won’t ruin it for you here but Donal should continue fighting and bring this story to a close. Other than that, please watch this when you get a chance or need something to throw on Netflix when you’re chilling out after work!