THE MOLLY MAGUIRES
Review by Chastity Campbell
Starring: Sean Connery, Richard Harris, Samantha Eggar
Director: Martin Ritt
Video: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Audio: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround
Features: See Review
Release Date: April 27, 2004
ďIf your making it a choice
between getting killed and a little information, well, Iím wanted for shoving
ďThatís a bellyful right
Iím wanted for shoving the queer! In itís original context, this statement means he was a
counterfeiter! However, I have to
admit that my mind went in a completely different direction when I heard those
words spoken aloud. I immediately
thought Queer Eye For The Straight Guy meets the WWE!
The Molly Maguires is a pretty straight forward
movie: disgruntled Irish coal
miners in the late 1800ís take matters into their own hands because of
dangerous work conditions and extremely unfair wages.
The workers have formed a secret group called the Molly
Maguires to get back at the boss men, and make them sit up and take notice.
When things get so bad the men just canít take it anymore, they put a
plan in motion. One example of
their resolve happens in the first ten minutes of the film.
The men are being hauled up the mine shaft one group at a time, the last
group sets charges and lights extremely long waterproof fuses. They leave the mine and about five minutes later, KABOOM!!!
The boss men are tired of losing equipment, time, and
money. They find a man whoís used
to running the con game, and send him into the mine to find out whoís in
charge so they can dispatch these dissidents.
Sean Connery is the leader of the Mollys, and heís a very
untrusting sort. When Richard
Harrisí character shows up in the mine, it takes Connery quite a while before
he trusts the newbie. Connery makes
him jump through more hoops than a poodle in the circus before he begrudgingly
As Harris further insinuates himself into the Mollys, he
begins to have reservations about fulfilling his end of the bargain to the mine
owners. Will he give up the
hard working men who only want a chance to earn a decent wage, or will he stick
by his new friends, and help them take down the man?
Connery is at his best in this film.
Heís always been (and to some degree, still is) sexy, and the deep burr
of his Scottish brogue draws you in, and makes you want to scream, WHEREíS YER
I thoroughly enjoyed watching the late Richard Harris in
this film. He had a very long, and
wonderful career. His
abilities as an actor were highlighted by the diverse roles he chose to play.
Whether he was learning about magic from Merlin, while playing the part
of King Arthur, or teaching Harry Potter how to wield his mystical powers as the
beloved Dumbledore, he brought 100% to each performance.
This movie has a great story, and wonderful acting
throughout. I really enjoyed
watching this DVD and I think if you give it a chance, youíll be singing
itís praises, good golly miss Molly!
TRIVIA: Richard Harris, and Sean Connery both took a
turn as King Arthur in two separate films.
Harris was a warm, caring, and compassionate Arthur in, Camelot, while
Connery took the warrior route with his portrayal of Arthur in First Knight.
While the video wasnít as clean and crisp as the audio,
it still held itís own for a considerably older print.
This DVD was presented in a 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
format. The colors were bright, and
there was very little dirt visible.
The one major problem I had with this print was that even though the colors were bright, they did have a hazy appearance to them. This graininess seemed to plague the film from beginning to end. For the time period it was filmed in, I am extremely impressed. It was a clean print, however the visible graininess detracted from its overall look.
This DVDís audio was extremely surprising considering its
age and the time during which it was filmed.
The 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround sound was extremely clean
with no detectable audio flaws. The
levels remained constant throughout, and there were no dips or drop outs in the
The inspiring part of this DVDís audio for me was the
English Restored Mono selection under the setup option.
I enjoyed the 5.1 surround sound option, but the Mono option was just as
clean and easy on the ears. I wish
I had been able to hear the original audio before they took the time to restore
it, because as clean as this print was, in both the 5.1 and Mono version I have
to believe that someone was either paying very close attention to detail when
this film was originally recorded, or clean up efforts for DVD releases have
taken on a whole new level of importance for studios presenting them.
Scene selection and audio options for 5.1 Dolby Digital
Surround and English Restored Mono are the only extras these Mollys stuck in