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Shooting for Socrates (2014)

91 min | Comedy, Drama, Sport

In November 1985, the troubled streets of Belfast are torn up by rioting yet again. In amongst the angry mob, we find nine year old Tommy, nonchalantly dribbling a ball through the insanity. Whilst politicians argue over the peace process,...See moreIn November 1985, the troubled streets of Belfast are torn up by rioting yet again. In amongst the angry mob, we find nine year old Tommy, nonchalantly dribbling a ball through the insanity. Whilst politicians argue over the peace process, there's only one thing on young Tommy's football-mad mind - the forthcoming World Cup, where Northern Ireland will take on Brazil. For the South American giants it's just another step on the path to inevitable global domination, yet for Northern Ireland, and young Tommy, it's the biggest game of their lives. They are two countries that couldn't seem further apart: Northern Ireland, with its Orange men and Republican curbstones, the Rev'd Ian Paisley and Fergal Sharkey; and Brazil with its carnival, its Samba, with Pelé and the 'beautiful game'. On the football field, eccentric Northern Ireland coach Billy Bingham (they call him Mr FIFA - "a fee for this and a fee for that") must plug together a bunch of misfits and third divisioners. Brazil are led by none other than the philosopher-captain (Dr.) Sócrates, who has, in part, inspired the collapse of his country's ruthless military junta, and they are the hot favourites to scoop up football's ultimate prize. As bunting replaces bombs on the streets of Belfast, and Catholic and Protestants alike turn their attention to the big match, Tommy's dockworker turned philosopher father Arthur uses his son's passion for football to enlighten him on the events that make up his chaotic world. The story interweaves young Tommy's coming of age tale with the trials and travails of the hapless Northern Irish team over the nine months leading up to their ultimate game, in the stifling heat of Mexico at the world's greatest festival of football. As the hours tick down to the ultimate battle, with his lead striker crocked, Bingham is forced to place his faith in young rookie, Davey Campbell - "the next George Best". Back home, Tommy waits anxiously for the biggest day of his life - because the day of the match is also his tenth birthday - and his father has promised to take him to the "top of the World" - the massive crane at Belfast Docks where Arthur works. From here he can see the whole of his world, but can he understand the lessons his father, inspired by the Greek philosopher Socrates, is trying to teach him? This is a story of two nations, two teams, and a father and a son, the things that divide them and the things that unite us all. Set against the backdrop of the 1986 World Cup and the sociopolitical backgrounds of both nations - this is the story of the world's smallest footballing nation, taking on its best. With laughter and passion, this is the ultimate story of the beautiful game and what it means. Written by Anonymous See less
Read more: Plot summary
Writers
James Erskine (original screenplay by) | Marie Jones (original screenplay by)
Producers
Composer
Andrew Simon McAllister (original score by)
Cinematographer
Editor
Jason Savage (as Jason Savage BGFTE)
Casting Director
Production Designer
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Status
Edit Released
Updated Jul 5, 2014

Release date
Jun 12, 2015 (Ireland)

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Cast

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41 cast members
Name STARmeter Known for
John Hannah
Billy Bingham Billy Bingham   See fewer
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Conleth Hill
Jackie Fullerton Jackie Fullerton   See fewer
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Ciarán McMenamin
Sammy McIlroy Sammy McIlroy   See fewer
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Nico Mirallegro
David Campbell David Campbell   See fewer
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Paul Kennedy
Pat Jennings Pat Jennings   See fewer
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Chris Newman
Norman Whiteside Norman Whiteside   See fewer
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Aaron McCusker
Gerry Armstrong Gerry Armstrong   See fewer
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Mathew McElhinney
Jimmy Nichol Jimmy Nichol   See fewer
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Barry Ward
Jimmy Quinn Jimmy Quinn   See fewer
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Patrick Buchanan
Alan McDonald Alan McDonald   See fewer
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Declan Rodgers
Bernard McNally Bernard McNally   See fewer
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Stephen Hagan
Phil Hughes Phil Hughes   See fewer
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Andy Moore
Mal Donaghy Mal Donaghy   See fewer
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Lorraine Sass
Rebecca Bingham Rebecca Bingham   See fewer
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Frankie McCafferty
Derek the Kit Man Derek the Kit Man   See fewer
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Gerard Jordan
Albert kirk Albert kirk   See fewer
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Packy Lee
Wigsy Wigsy   See fewer
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Peter Ballance
Jim Cambell Jim Cambell   See fewer
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Conan Sweeny
Barney the Barman Barney the Barman   See fewer
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Cathan McRoberts
Soldier Smith Soldier Smith   See fewer
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John Travers
Frankie Frankie   See fewer
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Maggie Cronin
Landlady Landlady   See fewer
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Sergio Mur
Socrates Socrates   See fewer
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Julia Dearden
Mrs. McIlroy (as Julia Deardren) Mrs. McIlroy (as Julia Deardren)   See fewer
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Katie Tumelty
Mrs. Jones Mrs. Jones   See fewer
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Allan Gildea
Christopher's Dad Christopher's Dad   See fewer
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Jude Crawford
Christopher Christopher   See fewer
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William Graham
Simon Jones Simon Jones   See fewer
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Mike Nesbitt
Football Commentator Football Commentator   See fewer
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Frank Cannon
Bar patron (uncredited) Bar patron (uncredited)   See fewer
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Hugh Irvine
Bar Patron (uncredited) Bar Patron (uncredited)   See fewer
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Bobby Marno
British Solider (uncredited) British Solider (uncredited)   See fewer
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Simon Millar
Press (uncredited) Press (uncredited)   See fewer
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Ross Moneypenny
Soldier (uncredited) Soldier (uncredited)   See fewer
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Kristy Robinson
Bar patron (uncredited) Bar patron (uncredited)   See fewer
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Gary Wales
Bar Member (uncredited) Bar Member (uncredited)   See fewer
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Ratings Breakdown

5.9 / 10 | 191 votes