The Miracle Club

#Review: The Miracle Club

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Coming this week to Irish cinemas is The Miracle Club. Starring Kathy Bates, Maggie Smith, Laura Linney and Agnes O’Casey, this story follows a group of women heading to Lourdes hoping for a miracle in each of their lives.

Directed by Thaddeus O’Sullivan, this film is set in 1960s Dublin. The film follows these women travelling to Lourdes and how the effect of a returning figure from the past incites an emotional incident within them all.

What works for The Miracle Club is its intimate and impressive cast. Led by Kathy Bates, who plays Eileen, the characters are all full of regret and want. They desperately wish to improve their lives. Whether it is Eileen hoping for her cancer to be cured, to Dolly hoping to get her young son to finally speak, they’re all hoping to have their lives become something better. Maggie Smith’s Lily is a particularly interesting character, hiding much behind her seemingly quiet visage. She’s a quiet powerhouse.

The Miracle Club – I was banished

One of the key storylines involves the return of Laura Linney’s character Chrissie to the community after 40 years of exile. Now returned, she is looking for healing from her home and the people within it and she sees Lourdes as a possible avenue. Linney brings a lot to this performance. She’s clearly someone who has come to terms with the tragedy of her life. However, this last corner of her life still aches at her.

All these characters are what make The Miracle Club so memorable. Their relationships are human and genuine, and all these elements add to the overall narrative. The story itself is fairly predictable. However, I put that down to something like this happening in Ireland which is very familiar to many people. If I had any other issues it would be Kathy Bates and Maggie Smith’s Irish accents. It doesn’t help that they’re surrounded by Irish actors. They’re distracting at first, thankfully though as the film went on, I got used to it.

I believe that The Miracle Club is a story about finding peace and that a simple miracle is never just that. With this strong cast pushing it forward, this is a memorable and bittersweet look into the past of Ireland. If you have the chance, check it out in your local cinema. I recommend it.

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