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Film / The Shore

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The Shore is a 2012 film from Northern Ireland directed by Terry George.

The setting is a small coastal town. Paddy (Conleth Hill) is a minimally employed villager who lost an arm many years before, after he got shot during The Troubles. He draws unemployment insurance while earning a little side cash harvesting mussels from the beach.

Arriving in Northern Ireland after 25 years is Jim (Ciarán Hinds), along with his daughter, Pat (Kerry Condon). Back during the Troubles, things got so bad that Jim lit out for America, leaving behind his devoted girlfriend Mary. Jim had thought that Mary would come with him, but after he had been in America for a little while he met the woman who became Pat's mother. Mary, left behind in Northern Ireland, eventually got married—to Paddy.


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Tropes:

  • Ask a Stupid Question...: When the lady at the unemployment office asks if Paddy has had any work, he says "Oh yes. The Queen's asked me to form a government." (Besides being funny this also establishes that the movie takes place in Northern Ireland rather than the Irish Republic.)
  • Blood Brothers: Jim tells his daughter a story about how when they were boys, he and Paddy did the whole "prick your fingers and smear your blood together" oath of friendship.
  • Manly Tears: Paddy sobs after he and Jim hug.
  • Not What It Looks Like: A patrolwoman on a horse ambles by. Mary asks her to go out to the shore to retrieve Paddy. Paddy and his buddies, seeing a cop on a horse coming at them, think that they're about to get busted for harvesting mussels while also drawing unemployment checks. They panic and run.
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  • Slice of Life: A fairly simple story of a misunderstanding that divides two friends, and their reconciliation after a long time apart.
  • Squirrels in My Pants: Done deliberately when one of the guys harvesting mussels in the mud flats drops a crab down another guy's pants.
  • Title Drop: When Pat and Jim come by looking for Paddy, Mary tells them "He's at the shore."
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