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Butcher Boy (1997)

Director: Neil Jordan     Starring: Eamonn Owens Stephen Rea
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Learn more about Butcher Boy:

Format: DVD
Sku: 203380387
UPC: 012569585638
UPC 14: 00012569585638
Rating: Game Rating Code
See more in Family & Kids
From the Director of The Crying Game, Interview with the Vampire and Mona Lisa.
Hailed coast-to-coast as one of 1998's best films! The director of The Crying Game and Interview with the Vampire crafts this inventive tale of a boy who uses humor, hooliganism and horror to cope with the world around him.Year: 1998 Director: Neil Jordan Starring: Stephen Rea, Fiona Shaw, Eammon OwernsFormat: DVD MOVIE

"Vital and original. A keenly felt, startlingly dark comedy.  Jay Carr, The Boston Globe
"Stark, brilliant, stylistic and intense.  Paddy Barrett, Screen International
"Darkly funny and hallucinogenic. Neil Jordan's choicest cut of filmmaking yet.  Premiere

Editor's Note
Director Neil Jordan expertly blends fantasy and reality in the saga of Francie Brady (Eamonn Owens), an energetic and imaginative boy whose bleak existence in a small 1960s Ireland town eventually drives him to drastic measures. With his friend Joe (Alan Boyle), Francie escapes into a world of comic books, television, and science fiction films to cope with his mentally ill mom (Aisling O'Sullivan) and alcoholic father (Stephen Rea, who also plays the adult Francie). Tragic circumstances mount, and the chasm between Francie's imaginary life and the drab reality of rural Ireland grows too great, leading to bloody consequences.

Jordan scripted THE BUTCHER BOY along with the author of the novel, Patrick McCabe, and the result is an unusual and rewarding blend of pitch-black comedy and wry social commentary. Owens, in his screen debut, is an absolute marvel as the lead, strutting through the film with the irrepressible cheek of a Marx brother. Cleverly avoiding a depressing or obvious depiction of Francie's breakdown, the film is a truly original, funny, and horrifying work that will likely gain recognition as a cult classic. Sinéad O'Connor appears as the Virgin Mary and also sings the title song.


Video Features DVD

Technical Info

Release Information
Video Mfg Name Studio: Warner
Video Release Date Release Date: 4/27/2010
Video Release Year Original Release Date: 1997
Video CategoryId Catalog ID: 58563
Video UPC UPC: 00012569585638
Video Number of Discs Number of Discs: 1

Audio & Video
Video Original Language Original Language: English
Video Audio Spec Available Audio Tracks: English
Video Color Spec Video: Color

Aspect Ratio
Video Aspect Ratio Widescreen  1.85:1
Entertainment Reviews
Expert Review The Butcher Boy - DVD
By: Chris Barsanti DVD Reviews
Published on: 2/28/2007 5:25 AM
A horrific tale of madness and abuse told with pop-eyed color and giddy humor, Neil Jordan's 1997 adaptation of the Patrick McCabe novel The Butcher Boy is a discordant and murderously funny masterpiece of the highest order. Unlike most acclaimed films of antisocial alienation and violence, which tend to always maintain a coolly entertained distance, this one dives so far into its protagonist's scrambled worldview that by the time it's all over, it takes one a little time to readjust to the world as it actually is. Francie Brady (Eamonn Owens) is a young kid living in a small (and small-minded) Irish town during the early the full review

Cast & Crew

Video Cast Info Eamonn Owens
Video Cast Info Fiona Shaw
Video Cast Info Sean McGinley
Video Cast Info Stephen Rea
Video Cast Info Adrian Biddle - Cinematographer
Video Cast Info Anna Rackard - Art Director
Video Cast Info Elliot Goldenthal, et. al. - Original Music By
Video Cast Info Neil Jordan - Director
Video Cast Info Neil Jordan - Screenplay
Video Cast Info Neil Jordan - Executive Producer
Video Cast Info Pat McCabe - Screenplay
Video Cast Info Pat McCabe - Based On Novel By
Video Cast Info Redmond Morris - Producer
Video Cast Info Tony Lawson - Editor
Plot Summary
THE BUTCHER BOY, Neil Jordan's adaptation of Patrick McCabe's novel, is a bold, brash, and original romp through the life of a troubled young Irish boy.

Professional Reviews

Box Office
"...An extraordinary piece of cinema....This film gives life to the screen, capturing an era long forgotten..." -- 4 out of 5 stars 09/01/1997 p.108

Rolling Stone
"...Haunting and hypnotic....Look for THE BUTCHER BOY to ignite more than a minor blaze..." 04/16/1998 p.89

Sight and Sound
"...THE BUTCHER BOY sustains its breakneck pace. It's razor-sharp -- Neil Jordan's best film yet..." 03/01/1998 p.44

USA Today
"...The movie is well-crafted and tightly assembled..." 04/03/1998 p.5E

New York Times
"...[A] strange, astonishing film....Mr. Jordan creates a riveting mixture of daydream and reality..." 04/03/1998 p.E16

"...Jordan makes a striking return to his Irish indie roots....Owens is remarkable as a charming little misfit..." 05/01/1998 p.26

Los Angeles Times
"...Jordan is remarkable in his ability to reveal people's inner lives and the interaction between everyday life and an individual's imagination and driving passion....[A] unique and uniquely challenging film..." 04/03/1998 p.C1

Chicago Sun-Times
"...Neil Jordan is a strong, passionate director, and THE BUTCHER BOY is original work..." 04/17/1998 p.31

Entertainment Weekly
"[A] wickedly black comic tale...The great movie Stanley Kubrick never got to make." -- Grade: B 02/16/2007 p.64

ReelViews 8 of 10
Over the past few weeks, I have heard The Butcher Boy compared to everything from A Clockwork Orange to The 400 Blows. And, while I suppose there are some superficial similarities, those who are making such comparisons appear to be giving far too much credit to this film. The Butcher Boy works best as a dark comedy and social satire, and is somewhat less successful as a character study of a deeply-troubled young boy whose violent impulses are fed by his unstable environment...There's no debating that Francie is a fascinating individual, or that newcomer Eamonn Owens gives an amazing performance, but this boy doesn't burrow under our skin in the same way that the two girls from Heavenly Creatures (a not entirely dissimilar film) do. - James Berardinelli

The SF, Horror and Fantasy Film Review 9 of 10
With The Butcher Boy, Neil Jordan, the highly acclaimed director of the likes of Mona Lisa (1986), The Crying Game (1992), Michael Collins (1996) and The End of the Affair (1999), dives into tackling Patrick McCabe's celebrated novel about disturbed youth. Jordan (and with McCabe also on script) tackles some difficult themes - the film is a unsettling portrait of a child in an abusive home who becomes increasingly alienated, socially ostracized and eventually locked in an asylum, before the film climaxes in a frightening explosion of violence. But despite the gravity of its thematic matter, The Butcher Boy contrarily manages to be a remarkably cheerful film. Jordan directs with an enormous degree of vibrance and colour and is abetted to a tremendous extent by a wonderfully charismatic and aggressive performance from Eamonn Owens in the central role. - Richard Scheib

Product Attributes

Product attributeActor:   Rea,Stephen
Product attributeLabel:   Warner Home Video
Product attributeMusic Format:   DVD
Product attributeVideo Format:   DVD
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