These notes were contributed by members of the GradeSaver community.
We are thankful of their contributions and encourage you to make your own.
Written by Timothy Sexton
The Crying Game is a Neil Jordan movie, which means it is going to feature Stephen Rea. Jordan and Rea are Irish equivalent of Scorsese and DeNiro. While Rea has been either a star or featured player in most of Jordan’s film, the collaboration all comes together in The Crying Game like it does nowhere else. Fergus is presented as a foot soldier in the never-ending battle for independence from British rule that has been waged by the Irish Republican Army (IRA) since it seems like forever. An IRA soldier he may be, but a very singular and individualized soldier Fergus most certainly is. It is simply not in his character to be quite as politically involved, emotionally invested or militarily ruthless as his cohorts in the kidnapping of a British military soldier. Because Stephen Rea is allowed by Jordan to explore Fergus as a unique individual rather than as a didactic mouthpiece, many critics have targeted unexpected twists and turns in the relationships as unrealistic and highly improbable. Rea so completely inhabits the malleable nature of Fergus that such a criticism only serves to underscore an absence of understanding in the critics rather than the filmmakers. Stephen Rea was deservedly nominated for an Academy Award and undeservedly lost to yet another case when Oscar voters mistook a big star playing a person with a disability as being considerably more difficult than an actor making a totally average Joe utterly memorable.
Jody is the British soldier who is kidnapped by Fergus and his fellow IRA members. During the period in which Jody is held hostage, he and Fergus develop a much closer and more humane relationship during which Jody shares information with Fergus about his girl back home and makes him promise to make the effort to contact her should the kidnapping not go according to plan. Actor Forest Whitaker was born in Texas and grew up in South Central Los Angeles so his casting as a British soldier may seem a bit jarring to those to who view The Crying Game already armed with some knowledge about Whitaker’s background. While Britons may be quick to disagree, the British accent adopted by Whitaker to play the ill-fated Jody should not prove problematic. What may be more problematic for those lucky viewers who know nothing about the movie until they sit down to watch it is the singular way in which Jody shares something with Marion Crane of Psycho.
Jude is a far more committed member of the group of IRA soldiers who conspired to kidnap Jody from a local carnival. So committed is Jude that she serves as the female bait to lure Jody into a romantic encounter during which he lowers his guard, thus facilitating his abduction by Fergus and the other male accomplices. The normally blonde Miranda Richardson is the figure in the short black pageboy haircut holding a smoking gun and looking directly into the camera featured on the iconic poster for The Crying Game. Richardson was also nominated for a BAFTA Award (the British Oscars) for Best Supporting Actress and actually took home the Best Supporting Actress prize handed out by the New York Film Critics Circle Awards for her work in The Crying Game, Enchanted April and Damage
Dil is Jody’s girlfriend back home in England. When the best laid plans of kidnapping Jody go bad, Fergus assumes and alias and heads to London to hide out and keep his promise to Jody. The relationship that develops between Dil and Fergus becomes the focus of the film’s plot from that point as the narrative reveals unexpected twists and turns which further cement how the nature of Fergus is particularized and not utilized for polemical purposes. The Crying Game was Jaye Davidson’s first film and the rookie performance garnered nominations from both the American and British Academy Awards.
Maguire is essentially the leader of the band of IRA members who carry out the kidnapping of Jody. He and Jude both eventually track down Fergus and coerce him into taking part in the assassination of a judge by threatening to kill Dil if he refuses. By this time, Fergus is fully into a romantic relationship with her, but has the additional incentive of being tried and convicted in absentia by the IRA for his questionable behavior in the kidnapping of Jody. Faced with not just his own death, but Dil’s as well, Fergus gives in to Maguire’s demands.The film climaxes when the dual narratives of Fergus' attempts to escape his IRA past and the relationship with Dil that marks his possible future collide during the planned assassination attempt.
Update this section!
You can help us out by revising, improving and updating