Like In The Name Of The Father before it, Some Mother ’3 Son will touch raw political nerves with its dramatisation of the IRA hunger strikes. The movie’s writer and director Terry George imprisoned in the 70s for his Republican connections shares memories of The Troubles with Belfast native Mark MacQuitty.

orthern Ireland. 198]: the year of the hunger strikes, of Bobby Sands MP. mass funerals. and a lot oftension. So much so that even pupils from the

Belfast were kept off school, just in case there was ‘trouble’. Not that any of us ever saw much genuine action on our net-curtained streets. but the ongoing television coverage was enough to let you know something serious was going down.

24 The List IO-23 Jan 1997

quiet middle-class Proddy end of

That and the Bobby Sandsjokes. In true Ulster fashion. the terminal refusal of food by [RA prisoners putting extreme pressure on the Thatcher government to grant them ‘political’ status fuelled a series of running gags. A robust thing. the Northern Ireland sense of humour. and no respecter of political correctness either. How else are you going to deal with thousands of deaths in a country not much bigger than a postage stamp? Living with shootings. bombings. killings. maimings and acts of

outrage and horror on a daily basis. gave you little alternative.

On the ‘other side‘ however. laughter was probably in shorter supply than usual. Belfast- born Terry George. co-writer with Jim Sheridan on the Guildford Four movie In The Name Of The Father. has strong memories of the period. He has turned them into a hard-hitting debut film Some Mother '3 Son.

‘On the streets where I came from. it was the most traumatic experience of the past 30 years.

Mother love: Helen Mirren comforts IRA hunger striker son Aldan GIIIen