Dublin, Ireland + Soul Music = The Commitments
Deschutes Public Library pleased to announce February’s Library Theater movie screening on Tuesday, March 15 in the Library Admin Conference Room at 6:00 p.m. This program is free and open to the public.
Posted By: Liz Goodrich
Date Posted: 2/20/2005
It seems natural to celebrate all that is Irish during the month of March. This month’s Library Theater screening highlights the trials and tribulations of a working class Irish band, determined to inject Dublin with a little bit of soul. The film, released in 1991, adapted from award winning author Roddy Doyle’s first novel and directed by Alan Parker, features notable characters like Jimmy Rabbitte, Joey the Lips Fagen, and a cast of other memorable down and out northside Dublin musicians.
Don Kunz, who taught English at the University of Rhode Island from 1968 – 2001 and piloted a class in Literature to Film in 1974, provides a short introduction to the film prior to screening. “The film adaptation of the novel is an allegory on the Irish troubles,” says Kunz. “The band’s formation and disintegration parallels Ireland’s futile struggle to end the troubles that have plagued Ireland.” Kunz says that Parker’s adaptation suggests that the troubles continue because the Irish cannot be inspired enough to put aside their personal grievances and be untied in a common goal. Those same problems are played out within the band against a soundtrack of powerfully delivered soul tunes, including “At The Dark End of the Street,” and “Destination Anywhere.” Kunz, who admits that “musicals aren’t my thing,” stumbled across the film after spending time in western Ireland. His article “Alan Parker’s Adaptation of Roddy Doyle’s The Commitments,” appeared in Film Literature Quarterly, Vol. 29, No. 1, 2001.
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