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The owner of a British nightclub attempts to do the impossible by coaxing a legendary Irish tenor out of retirement for a once-in-a-lifetime show in this engagingly quirky comedy. The owner, Mickey O'Neill, is particularly desperate to land a performance by the great Josef Locke, as his already questionable reputation was ruined when he booked an impostor claiming to be Locke. Now only providing a show by the real thing can make up for it. Trouble is, Locke fled England several decades before to avoid charges of tax evasion, and would face immediate arrest upon his return. Naturally, the comedy emerges from O'Neill's desperate attempts to convince Locke to participate in the scheme. Much of the film's charm comes from the presentation of eccentric but believable characters, particularly Locke himself -- a real historical figure given warm life by Ned Beatty, who was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Golden Globe for his performance. The film as a whole manages a similar balancing act between realism and comic fantasy, grounding even the less believable aspect of the narrative in strongly observed local color. ~ Judd Blaise, Rovi

  • Release date:December 27, 1991


Awarded by
British Academy of Film and Television Arts Adrian Dunbar Best Original Screenplay 1993 Nominee


Ned Beatty
as Josef Locke
Adrian Dunbar
as Mickey O'Neill
David McCallum
as Jim Abbott
Tara Fitzgerald
as Nancy Doyle
Shirley Ann Field
as Cathleen Doyle
William Hootkins
as Mr. X
James Nesbitt
as Fintan O'Donnell
Stephen Marcus
as Gordon
Maurice Blake
as Jo's Boy
Anna Manahan
as Mrs. McGlinchy
Britta Smith
as Kitty Ryan
Liam O'Callaghan
as Jo's Boy
Harold Berens
as Benny Rose
Norman Vaughan
as Himself
Jim Mooney
as Drunk in Pub
Mary McLeod
as Librarian
Bal Moane
as Brewery Man
Phil Kelly
as Ronnie Lavelle
David Beggs
as 3rd Taxi Driver
Brian Hoey
as Mr. X
Laurie Morton
as Molly
Frank Kelly
as 2nd Taxi Driver
Jean Blanchflower
as Ronnie's Mum
Ruaidhri Conroy
as Grandson Ryan
Terry David Mulligan
as Young Jo
Aidan Grenell
as Compere
Agnes Bernelle
as Receptionist
Terry Adams
as Dressmaker
Paddy Cole
as Jo's Boy
Bill Maynard
as Barry Haden
Jimmy Keogh
as Jo's Boy
Joe Cuddy
as Franc Cinatra
Tony Morando
as Jo's Boy
Constance Cowley
as Nurse
Terence Orr
as Receiver
Brian McGrath
as Barman
Vernon Midgley
as Josef Locke
Tommy Lack
as Old Musician
Marie Mullen
as Micky's Mum
Gladys Sheehan
as Grandma Ryan
Donna McReady
as Young Cathleen
Pat Laffan
as 1st Taxi Driver
John Dair
as Derek
Gina Moxley
as Brenda Ryan


Peter Chelsom
Alison Owen
Simon Fields
Russ Russell
Graham Bradstreet
David Brown
John Paul Chapple
Peter Chelsom
Adrian Dunbar
Sue Gibson
Martin Walsh
Caroline Hanania
Production Designer
Katharine Naylor
Art Director
Lindy Hemming
Costume Designer