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Belfast review: lots of heart and lots of laughter by Kenneth Branagh

Here’s our review of Belfast, Kenneth Branagh’s latest film, which was nominated for seven Academy Awards

TITLE: Belfast. GENUS: dramatic, biographical. COUNTRY: UK. DIRECTOR: Kenneth Branagh. CAST: Jude Hill, Jamie Dornan, Catherine Balfe, Judi Dench, Ciaran Hinds, Colin Morgan. time: 97 minutes. PRODUCTION: TKBC. ITALIAN DISTRIBUTION: Universal. EXIT: February 24, 2022.

Belfast is undoubtedly one of this year’s jewels and one of the best films of the current awards season, which is living as a protagonist. The film of Kenneth Branagh has received a shower of nominations and is preparing to live the night of the Oscar in the front row, with his own 7 nomination (find all the applications here). Let’s go into the Belfast review now, starting with trailer of the film.

The plot | Belfast Review

Belfast tells the director’s childhood and screenwriter of the film, Kenneth Branagh. The Northern Irish capital, in the summer of 1969sees in its streets the explosion of a contained civil war between Protestants and Catholics. Little Buddy (Jude Hill) and his family are Protestants, but this is not synonymous with immunity from this confrontation. The street where she lives sees the presence of many Catholic families and this leads her to be the victim of attacks by loyalist fanatics. The latter, led by Billy Clanton (Colin Morgan), they try to hire Buddy’s father as well (Jamie Dornan), but he refuses. Meanwhile, the protagonist’s family grapples with back taxes and a lack of money, while the dramatic situation on the streets puts their stay in the city in question.

Heart | Belfast Review

Although the civil war is always in the background, what is most striking about Belfast is its heart. The protagonist is in fact a 9-year-old boy, who sees the world with the eyes that can only be had at that age. Buddy is none other than Branagh as a child and this only makes us appreciate even more the little moments of both suffering and joy that invade the film. The protagonist is well aware of the situation that his family is experiencing, of the sacrifices of the mother (Catherine Balfe) and of his father, than his grandparents (Judi Dench e Ciaràn Hinds) are elderly and the pain that his hometown is going through. In the midst of so much pain, however, the laughter of children, their fun, their playing football or with toy cars stand out, in a period that seems very distant from our days. To exacerbate this condition is the use of a nostalgic black and white which, especially with the initial transition, it helps to transport us to the world of Belfast, or rather that of Belfastseen through the eyes of its director.

Kenneth Branagh at full power | Belfast Review

Given the director’s broad emotional involvement, Belfast couldn’t disappoint technically. The direction of the film is flawless, always focuses on the right looks and the right situations. We often see Buddy in a corner, experiencing a situation as a spectator in which he has nothing to say, since he is a child. While the grown-ups are talking, he stands aside, listening. We rarely see him face a situation head-on and the direction is perfect in let us experience the same emotions that go through his child’s body. Beside that, we have one photography which, also thanks to the black and white, is never out of place and embellishes Belfast, making it a unique film among those nominated for this year’s awards. Finally, the soundtrackwith the final Everlasting Love and Down To Joy (nominated for best song) standing out above the others.

Belfast review: lots of heart and lots of laughter by Kenneth Branagh


Belfast is one of the best films coming out in theaters lately. In a period marked by blockbusters, from those of superheroes to the Uncharted on duty, it is nice to be able to go into the room and enjoy an hour and a half light and fun. Once the lights are back on, it is impossible not to have a smile on the spectators’ faces. Kenneth Branagh frames one of the best films of his career as a director, which could also lead him to his first Oscar. The cast looks particularly goodalso supported by a thick script, as well as strongly autobiographical. Belfast probably won’t be the best movie you’ll see in your life, but if in some time you have to think of a movie that made you feel good, it will be high on your list.

And you, what do you think of our Belfast review? Have you seen the film in the hall? Let us know in the comments!

A film that warms the heart

Points in favor

  • Directed and written by Kenneth Branagh
  • The balance between drama and fun

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