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The final months of Bobby Sands, the Irish Republican Army activist who protested his treatment at the hands of British prison guards with a hunger strike, are chronicled in this historical drama, the first feature film from artist-turned-filmmaker Steve McQueen. Davey Gillen (Brian Milligan) is an IRA volunteer who is sentenced to Belfast's infamous Maze prison, where he shares a cell with fellow IRA member Gerry Campbell (Liam McMahon). Like most of the IRA volunteers behind bars, Gillen and Campbell are subjected to frequent violence by the guards, who in turn live with the constant… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 90%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Midway through the movie there's an epic 24-minute the claustrophobic cell block the protesters have already internalized their cause so deeply that the world of words seems distant and inconsequential."
‑ J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader
"Hunger is not about the rights and wrongs of the British in Northern Ireland, but about inhumane prison conditions, the steeled determination of IRA members like Bobby Sands, and a rock and a hard place."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"In the desolate surrounds of a prison environment that affronts humanity McQueen finds the redemptive struggles, and unrelenting spirit in the feces smeared walls of a British prison."
‑ Blake Howard, 2UE That Movie Show
"Not just the toughest film of the year but amongst the toughest ever made."
‑ Garth Franklin, Dark Horizons
"As pretentious as it is engrossing..."
‑ David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews
"It's a strength of this carefully composed, almost obsessively controlled picture that it has no interest in the conventional biographical focus on a subject."
‑ Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune
"Hunger -- the disturbing, provocative, brilliant feature debut from British director Steve McQueen -- does for modern film what Caravaggio did to Renaissance painting."
‑ Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail
"...simultaneously harsh and gentle; an early shot of a tiny snowflake melting on bloodied knuckles could serve as the movie's logo."
‑ Josh Larsen, LarsenOnFilm
"Hunger is tough going -- and compelling cinema throughout."
‑ Marshall Fine, Hollywood & Fine
"Director Steve McQueen delivers one the more memorable debut features of the last several years."
‑ Christopher Long, Movie Metropolis
"Hunger is daunting and powerful work."
‑ Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer
"Relying on images more than words, it's a plea for humanity in times of insanity."
‑ Peter Howell, Toronto Star
"Hunger will leave you feeling emotionally battered and bruised -- yet emerging from the cinema a stronger person for having witnessed such a beautiful and brutal film."
‑ Ben Rawson-Jones, Digital Spy
"Politically, Bobby Sands' suicide meant nothing, but it illustrated poisonous lengths to which someone would go in protecting the only reality he ever knew. This is terrorism's pox, and why the Troubles - though stabilized - still bear the scars of shame."
‑ Nick Rogers,
"a film of great visceral directness and emotional power"
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
More reviews for Hunger on Rotten Tomatoes

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