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When the Sky Falls

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The film tells the story, based on true events, of a female journalist who, with little concern for her own safety, took on the bloody force of the Dublin criminal underworld at great cost to herself. The story starts in 1995 with Sinead Hamilton (Joan Allen) already deep into an investigation of the Dublin Mafia.

Racing at 100 miles an hour through the Dublin hills, we find Sinead interviewing the notorious armed robber Martin Shaughnessy (Peter Postlethwaite) as his car screeches through the narrow country lanes. Shaughnessy insists that the corruption and degradation of Dublin is due, not to the likes of him - everyday armed robbers - but to the ruthless gangs running the ever growing and vastly profitable drug business. A business that corrupts all that it touches. These are the people that Sinead wants to expose; the drug barons gorging themselves on the city.

Soon after the interview is published Shaugnessy is assassinated. At the murder scene Sinead meets Mackey (Patrick Bergin), a local Police Detective. Mackey is the classic cynical cop - tough, angry and tired. Though he knows he's fighting a losing battle investigating these sorts of crimes, there's still just enough of the idealist left, to make him carry on. However, though Sinead and Mackey have the same purpose, their methods could not be more different.

So the scene is set. Heavily out-gunned in every respect, Sinead risks everything in her relentless pursuit of the underworld gangsters with only her wit, guile and sheer bravery to protect her. It's an investigation in which she discovers that truth has a cost, and that ultimately someone has to pay . . .


Type of film
Running Time
106 min approx
John MacKenzie
Kevin Menton, Peter Newman
Executive Producer
Kevin Menton, Peter Newman
Graham Walker
Colum McCann
Director of Photography
Seamus Deasy
Brenolam Deasy
Principal Cast
Joan Allen, Patrick Bergin, Liam Cunningham, Jimmy Smallhouse, Peter Postlethwaite, Jason Baroy

Production status


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Last updated 17th June 2010

Production Company

Irish Screen Ltd
Contact: Nigel Warren-Green
34 Lower Baggot Street
Dublin 2
Tel: 00 353 1 662 3505
Fax: 00 353 1 662 3507


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