113 minutes| U.S.A.-Ireland| 1997| Colour| 35mm

Another intense performance from Daniel Day-Lewis, here partnered with Emily Watson, returns Sheridan (and co-scriptwriter Terry George) to the Troubles in The Boxer. Unsettled by the more vicious attacks on In the Name of the Father, and the insistence of certain commentators on picking up on factual errors in the Guildford Four story, Sheridan decided to restrict himself to fictional material for his next work, which is set in Peace Process Belfast. This was to be his most generic film to date. Boxing dramas have long been a staple of Hollywood cinema and often, as here, a way of exploring the problems of occupying a masculine role in an emasculated society. Another new development was to place the love story at the centre of the narrative. The film remains one of Sheridan’s least seen Irish productions; by now he and his audiences were tiring of Troubles dramas.

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