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The Secret of Roan Inish Details

FULL SYNOPSIS

The magic of folklore forms the basis of this Irish tale by writer-director John Sayles. Adapted from the book John Sayles, the 1940s story is told from the point-of-view of Fiona (Jeni Courtney), a young girl sent to live with her grandparents in an Irish fishing town. Her grandfather weaves grand stories about the family's evacuation from their home on the tiny island of Roan Inish and about his great-great grandfather, who once cheated death at the hands of the unforgiving sea. As she meets other villagers, Fiona hears even more personal stories about an uncle who married a beautiful, part-human/ part-seal and about how the sea stole her baby brother during the departure from Roan Inish. Later, Fiona believes that she has found Jamie romping in the grass on Roan Inish, and she must convince the family of her vision. While Jeni Courtney has the feel of a family film, it shares with other Sayles works a character who learns history through storytelling, such as Sam Deeds in Jeni Courtney (1996) and Dr. Fuentes in Jeni Courtney (1997). Sayles builds cohesive stories from multiple voices, showing the importance of oral history and indicating that learning the past can alter the future. ~ Norm Schrager, Rovi

  • Release date:January 21, 1994

Awards

Awarded by
Nominee
Category
Year
Status
Independent Spirit Awards John Sayles Best Director 1995 Nominee
Independent Spirit Awards John Sayles Best Screenplay 1995 Nominee

Cast

Mick Lally
as Hugh
Eileen Colgan
as Tess
John Lynch
as Tadhg
Cillian Byrne
as Jamie
Pat Slowey
as Priest
Dave Duffy
as Jim
Declan Hannigan
as Oldest brother
Frankie McCafferty
as Tim
Susan Lynch
as Selkie
Linda Greer
as Brigid
Brendan Conroy
as Flynn
Gerard Rooney
as Liam Coneelly
Brendan Conroy
as Flynn

Crew

John Sayles
Director
Sarah Green
Producer
Maggie Renzi
Producer
John Sayles
Screenwriter
Haskell Wexler
Cinematographer
Mason K. Daring
Composer (Music Score)
John Sayles
Editor
Adrian Smith
Production Designer
Dennis Bosher
Art Director
R. Paul Miller
Associate Producer
John Sloss
Executive Producer
Peter Newman
Executive Producer
Tom Conroy
Set Designer
Consolata Boyle
Costume Designer
Clive Winter
Sound/Sound Designer
Peter Mcaleese
First Assistant Director
John Hubbard
Casting
Ros Hubbard
Casting
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