Waking Ned Devine
dir, by Kirk Jones
starring Ian Bannen, David Kelly, Fionnula Flanagan
The Luck o’ the Irish descends on the village of Tully More when one of its 52 inhabitants wins the Irish National Lottery. Who has the winning ticket? An investigation by Mike O’Sullivan and Jack O’Shea leads nowhere, until they notice poor old Ned Devine is missing. Turns out the shock of winning pushed old Ned’s heart into the great Lotto wheel in the sky. Sly Jackie works up a scam to convince the Lotto board Mike is really Ned. They convince the whole town to lie for a share in the proceeds, and amazingly, the scam works.
Tully More is a town fading away. The only residents not over fifty are Maggie, her illegitimate son, and 2 suitors. The illicit legacy of Ned Devine provides her and her son the chance to have the husband and father they need. Is smelly Pig Finn the boy’s father? We know Maggie loves him, but she can’t stand the odor of his work. While fruity soap fails to improve his aroma, the Lotto proceeds get the smell of his hogs off his skin long enough to marry Maggie. As Jackie points out, all of this is what Ned would have wanted.
Filmed on the stunning western coast of Ireland, and dripping with more brogue than you can shake a shillelagh at, this is a classic heist film. A series of fraudulent and felonious acts, coupled with lucky turns provided by the screenwriter, shows how some back country boys can outsmart the city slicker from the lottery board. How can they fail? The lottery man arrives in a Jet helicopter. He MUST be hoodwinked. It’s the rule. Take your mom.