Beyond The Fire review

"Respect the sincerity but this melodrama rings false"

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Sin, sexual abuse, erotic salvation... Director Maeve Murphy’s thick stew is worthy but heavy like a sledgehammer.

Her first feature since 2001’s women-in-prison drama, Silent Grace, Fire focuses on Irish ex-priest/ex-con Sheamy (Scot Williams), who moves to hipster locales in London to find one Father Brendan and falls for a rape survivor, Katie (Cara Seymour).

Love blossoms but Sheamy’s old demons scuppers its progress. Meanwhile, Murphy scuppers serious intent with studied solemnity, ham-fisted
direction, stilted performances and over-writing.

Do ex-priests say “Your soul is blackened with bitterness” during lovers’ tiffs? You respect the sincerity but this melodrama rings false.

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Freelance writer

Kevin Harley is a freelance journalist with bylines at Total Film, Radio Times, The List, and others, specializing in film and music coverage. He can most commonly be found writing movie reviews and previews at GamesRadar+.