ADiff review: Oedipal goings-on in Mammal

Director Rebecca Daly has a knack for carnality in a film punctuated by wailing, nocturnal tomcats and outbreaks of violence

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Director: Rebecca Daly
Cert: Club
Genre: Drama
Starring: Rachel Griffiths, Michael McElhatton, Barry Keoghan
Running Time: 1 hr 36 mins

Light House 1, Wednesday 24th, 8.30pm, 96 min

Margaret (Griffiths) learns that her 18-year-old son – whom she abandoned in infancy – is missing, presumed dead, just as she befriends Joe (Keoghan), a shiftless teenager living on the streets of her rather unsavoury borough. She offers the youngster a room and mothering until the relationship takes an Oedipal turn. We have seen similar relationships before – Nicole Kidman in Rabbit Hole and Strangerland, Toni Collette in Glassland – but director Rebecca Daly has a knack for carnality. Mammal is punctuated by wailing, nocturnal tomcats and outbreaks of violence. Michael McElhatton, playing Margaret's grieving ex-husband, counterbalances Griffith's deadened cool with spluttering hurt. But it's young Barry Keoghan who walks away with the picture.

Can't see this? See Vincent Cassel in the romantic drama Mon Roi. Cineworld 9, Wednesday 24th, 8.20pm

Tara Brady

Tara Brady

Tara Brady, a contributor to The Irish Times, is a writer and film critic