Synopsis & Press

85_hours_DVD_cover


"8.5 Hours" is an award-winning feature drama about one extraordinary day in the lives of four Dublin office workers
during the final months of Ireland's Celtic Tiger years. A controversial mix of intense drama and some very black comedy, it depicts the personal lives of four workers in a
small software company spiralling out of control throughout the course of one working day from 9.00 to 5.30, the 8.5
hours of the title. Sexually charged and constantly surprising, the story relentlessly twists and turns and builds to a series of haunting and unforgettable resolutions.

What the press said about 8.5 Hours:

"...THE BEST IRISH FILM IN YEARS."
- Irish Connections Magazine

"8.5 HOURS IS DEFINITELY RECOMMENDED"
- Irish Examiner USA

"IT'S A GOOD FILM"
- RTE Radio 1: Arena

"THERE'S NO DOUBT ABOUT IT, IT'S A REALLY GOOD MOVIE..."
- Galway Bay FM: Gary Kelly Show

"8.5 HOURS IS AN AMBITIOUS IDEA ON A TINY BUDGET. WRITER/DIRECTOR BRIAN LALLY DOES A GOOD JOB..."
- Sunday Independent

"... SUPERBLY CRAFTED, ACTED AND DELIVERS THE DRAMATIC GOODS ON SEVERAL FRONTS..."
- Irish American News

"... A REALLY BRILLIANT ACHIEVEMENT..."
- Today FM: The Last Word

"... STRONG PERFORMANCES THROUGHOUT... SPRAWLING... EPIC... EVOCATIVE... AND DISARMINGLY DARK"
- Eye For Film

 


Complete Article on "8.5 Hours" from Irish American News - June 2010

SWIMMING UPSTREAM by Charles Brady

"Yes! Something Positive to Say!

There's an Irish movie that's been doing the rounds of the film festivals for a while now. It won several awards at this stage and yet seems to have come up against a brick wall in some quarters. Its called "8.5 Hours" and when it had its American premiere in Arizona last month, then for anyone who was lucky enough to see it, it probably divided opinion amongst them; but for what my opinion is worth it's one of the best Irish films in years.

It's shot on a tight budget of around $100,000 but is superbly crafted, acted and delivers the dramatic goods on several fronts. This isn't usually a film column so I didn't check out out to any extent the writer/director Brian Lally. However, he has introduced me to some seriously interesting characters.

A bit like life, really.

I caught up with it at The Eye cinema in Galway some weeks ago. I was disappointed that I wasn't able to make the Wednesday showing where the director was doing a Questions and Answers session but the feedback was that the audience really enjoyed it. I had seen it the night before and found the same thing from being my usual nosy self.

It roughly tells the story of four office workers and their boss who may be workmates but sure as hell aren't friends in the conventional sense. The action takes place over one working day and being set in 2007, perfectly encapsulates the dying gasps of the Celtic Tiger.

Sounds grim? It is and it's not: there are dry one liners in it that lighten events - a little! - and make you give a sort of horrified gasp; but the thing is that you recognise these characters. You may not like them but you do recognise them.

I even recognised a small part of myself in what for me is the film's most revealing line:
"We were the first generation to have everything: we went to university, landed great jobs, made lots of money and some of us still managed to f**k it all up".

It seems to have come up against a barrier with the Dublin critics and maybe that's not surprising. We don't all like to look at our reflection in the mirror some mornings, after all, but it is honest and I really hope that you go to see it if you get the chance.

It definitely deserves an audience.

It is described as a social drama, but to be honest, considering how accurate I found it, it could almost pass as a social document of that not-so-long-ago time of surface affluence.

There's a solid cast that includes Victor Burke, Jonathan Byrne and Geraldline Plunkett but without doubt the most complex character is Rachel, played by Lynette Callaghan.

You may think that she is just a venal and grasping bitch (she is) or you may think that she is as ambitious as she needs to be, but one thing is for sure: you will not be indifferent to her.

As a snapshot of a certain period in modern Irish life I think that it is hard to beat. Nor do I regret the passing of that era."

Courtesy of Irish American News www.iannews.com