Veronica Guerin
September 22, 2003 10:43 AM   Subscribe

A new movie holding her name is coming out in the US soon, find out who she was, why she was killed, and why she deserved a movie. Meet the real Veronica Guerin.
posted by Dome-O-Rama (17 comments total)
Interesting, but the second link is broken.
posted by jacquilynne at 10:49 AM on September 22, 2003

I think the second link got Mefi'd. It was just there a minute ago.
posted by Dome-O-Rama at 10:54 AM on September 22, 2003

re: the real Guerin
I remember her murder very well. She was a brave woman, a cancer survivor, and a hard-ass reporter following a story even after she got threatened and shot. The media takes a lot of hits (and they often deserve them). But with the hacks and the dishonest there's also an army of brave men and women like Daniel Pearl, Maria Grazia Cutuli, Raffaele Ciriello and -- sadly -- scores of others.

As a police case/political can of worms, the Guerin case is a mess

re the movie:
Some critics are apparently unimpressed

Joel Schumacher directs. Not a reassuring thought.
posted by matteo at 12:17 PM on September 22, 2003

As for the movie, I won't be seeing this any time soon. I agree with matteo, Schumacher is a hack of the highest order. After reading Andrew Kevin Walker's fantastic screenplay for 8mm, I watched the movie and couldn't believe what he'd done to it. Interesting personality/story though (Guerin, not Schum.).
posted by dobbs at 12:49 PM on September 22, 2003

Read the third link first, then went to the movie site. I was all interested in seeing the trailer and the movie until I saw "Bruckheimer" and "Schumacher."

Damnit. It doesn't look all that The Rock-ish, but I have little faith in Bruckheimer. (:
posted by sarajflemming at 1:01 PM on September 22, 2003

For all those metal/rock-opera mefites out there, there's already a song/album about Veronica Guerin: The Wake of Magellan, by Savatage. Well, okay, it's sort of about VG--and it has a fun backstory about how life is precious and stuff too!

/pretentious metal music
posted by tragedy_and_comedy at 1:07 PM on September 22, 2003

As a Dubliner, I remember exactly where I was when she was shot. I was in the hall of my house, going down to the front door to welcome my mother home from work. She stumbled into the house, pale and upset. I knew something was wrong, and asked what was up. She told me that Veronica Guerin had been gunned down in her car. I remember jumping in shock at hearing it. She'd been shot before, as a warning. She'd risked being shot to death for what she was writing. And then, she was shot to death.

The film isn't precisely true to what happened in places, but the spirit is there. The scene of her death isn't glamourised - it's quite brutal, and was done in the way witnesses to her murder described it. I couldn't look at all of it.

As someone who read her work, and is aware of her life, it's a good film, true to who she was as a woman, a journalist, a wife and a mother. Her family approved of the film before its release, saying it was true to her as a person, and more or less true as it could be to what happened.

The real sadness of watching it is knowing that after her death there was a massive crackdown on organised crime in Ireland. In the 7 years since her death some of the funding to operate the policing programmes put into play after her death has been withdrawn, and now a new set of drug lords, drug wars and drug addicts are coming back once again. Veronica would be pissed off, I'd say, but probably resigned to it.
posted by tomcosgrave at 4:08 AM on September 23, 2003

I heard the movie is rrrrrrrrrubbish.

posted by Frasermoo at 5:54 AM on September 23, 2003

I heard the movie is rrrrrrrrrubbish.

Well, I've actually seen the movie, as opposed to hearing about it, so I disagree with you. Sorry.

Why don't you take a chance and go see it?
posted by tomcosgrave at 6:19 AM on September 23, 2003

tom: most of the people who got this movie made have an unfortunate predilection for all that's trashy. additionally, bruckheimer has signed off on films that were historically inaccurate in ways that are insulting to the way things had to be (pearl harbor, anyone?). i'm glad you were able to get something out of it, but one wishes that hollywood had hired a filmmaker who had an attitude closer to the nation than to, say, the national enquirer.
posted by pxe2000 at 7:01 AM on September 23, 2003

I realise that pxe2000 - it's not the only Bruckheimer / Schumacher vehicle I've seen - but this is worth looking at.

There are no big explosions in it. There's no fancy schmancy special effects a la Peal Harbour or anything else.

Maybe folks should cast aside their preconceptions (just this once?!) about those who made it and go and see it.

As someone who grew up in Dublin, reading about the subject of the film and the manner of how she died, it's worth seeing. There is a strong story there that was approved by the husband and family of the subject after it was completed - not approved before it was completed, which would imply the story had been watered down. True, some of the characters are composite characters, but when you have to fit a story into a couple of hours, that's going to be needed.

Sure the parts I've enclosed in bold tags should mean something?
posted by tomcosgrave at 7:11 AM on September 23, 2003

why she was killed

Aw man, now you've ruined the movie for me. Seriously though, I knew nothing about Veronica Guerin, was thinking about seeing the movie, only to have you ruin it for me.
posted by gyc at 7:31 AM on September 23, 2003

I knew nothing about Veronica Guerin, was thinking about seeing the movie, only to have you ruin it for me.

Well, it's implied at the start what happened, so it would have been spoiled anyway. As a real person, the film focuses on the events leading to her death, not the fact that she dies.

It's still worth seeing. Unless you only go to movies where you have get a pay off or some sort of punchline in the last few minutes of the film?
posted by tomcosgrave at 7:45 AM on September 23, 2003

tomcosgrave, I'll be seeing this movie on the strength of your recommendations - thanks for posting on this. Comments like "I heard the movie was rubbish" and "the people who made this movie have done bad projects in the past" are not convincing criticisms. What you've written (i.e., you've seen the movie and liked it, you know that Guerin family had input) is convincing praise.
posted by orange swan at 8:55 AM on September 23, 2003

As someone who grew up in Dublin, reading about the subject of the film and the manner of how she died

I meant to also add in here " reading what the subject herself wrote whilst still alive"....

Hope you enjoy the film OrangeSwan...
posted by tomcosgrave at 9:08 AM on September 23, 2003

i'm glad the movie meant something to you, tom, and i'm not belittling your interest in it. the involvement of the guerin family is certainly heartening.

the point i was trying to make, orangeswan, is not that the bruckheimer/schumacher braintrust has merely made bad movies in the past. for example, pearl harbor was riddled with dangerous and stupid historical inaccuracies, in addition to being a bad movie. prior to reading here (and seeing back-up) that the guerins had signed off on the film, i would have written this off the way i write off news from sources that don't let little things like facts get in the way of sensationalism and selling papers.

the story seems compelling (i know little about the original case) and cate blanchette is an actress whose work i enjoy watching. hearing the testimony here might compel me to see it when it hits the second-run theatres.
posted by pxe2000 at 2:38 PM on September 23, 2003

Saw the movie tonight and I'd agree with tomcosgrave--it's worth seeing, for Veronica's story and Cate Blanchett's performance. That said, I wish somebody with a more subtle touch had directed and produced. The theme music and over-the-top sentimentality got to be a tad much. Still, I'm glad I saw it and recommend it to anybody with an interest in the topic. It's slick and gripping despite its flaws.
posted by muckster at 8:16 PM on September 23, 2003

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