Thursday, 27 June 2013


Bobby Sands was only 27 years old when he died after 66 days on hunger strike in the Maze Prison where he was serving a sentence for possession of firearms. He was the leader of the 1981 hunger strike in which Irish Republican prisoners sought to gain special category status. Sands was elected as a member of the British Parliament during his time in prison. His death resulted in an upsurge of support and interest in the Provisional Irish Republican Army.

Fassbinder as Bobby Sands.
Steve McQueen’s directorial debut film Hunger (2008) dramatises the events in the Maze 6 weeks prior to Sands death. Michael Fassbender gives a compelling performance in the lead role in what is a very gruelling and bleak movie. The film is notable for an unbroken seventeen minute scene where a priest, played by Liam Cunningham, tries to talk Sands out of his protest with the camera remaining in a static position for the duration of the scene. It is thought that this is one of the longest single scenes of its type in a mainstream film. Hunger was voted the best film of 2008 by the Sight and Sound Magazine.

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