Differing Perceptions on Michael Collins - Elance

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					                              Differing Perceptions on Michael Collins

        Michael Collins was a man and a legend infused into one. And though the movie at

many parts seemed more to be glorifying the legend, it did also its fair share of informing on the

man. And though there are wild and unpredictably changing views on this enigmatic man, the

reviews for the movie are often even more so. From protests from both sides of the war saying

that Collins was horribly portrayed and didn’t fit their side no matter what side was being

referred to, to editorial reviewers differing in views and reach. But two prominent reviewers

being Roger Ebert, whose prominence goes without saying and Stanley Kauffmann with New

Republic, are two that can efficiently show the complex differences in point of view.

        Roger Ebert had a far more objective review of the film, which he says “Paints a heroic

picture of the Irish Republican Army’s inspired strategist and military leader.” (Ebert) Ebert

would go on to tell of how Collins would change the face of warfare as he introduced strategies

in guerilla warfare that would force the British to go on the defensive with the Irish situation.

And though he argues that at times, the movie seems to be dragged down by the romantic

interests, he doesn’t fail to give it three stars, which by his standards isn’t bad at all.

        Kauffmann on the other hand starts his review out by concentrating on the politics of

Michael Collins. He uses unrealistically large words to batter down both the director and his

portrayal of Michael Collins. “Jordan’s directing career gave no promise that he could handle

this large subject, and he has certainly kept that non-promise.” (Kauffmann) But what

Kauffmann doesn’t seem to be able to form an opinion on is whether or not the telling of the tale

was enough to support a possibly lacking movie department, Kauffmann went on wild rants

bashing the director and claiming the movie as an absolute failure: “Jordan made his way to this
picture through one passable piece of work, The Crying Game, and a heap of weakly ambitious

trash.” (Kauffmann) From there he went to name some of the so called “trash” which were in

fact widely acclaimed movies. Kauffmann seems entirely obsessed with his condemnations of

the director, that it is unclear whether he actually saw the movie, or just read a brief synopsis

online and then went on to bash the one thing he did know about.

       Both reviewers bring their own side of things to the table, and both help to shed light on

the story that has evoked so much emotion in the media. Ebert is, as always, strongly objective

and only briefly gives historical background into the story. He gives his opinion on the movie

and not the director or the production staff. Kauffmann on the other hand seems to likely be of

Irish decent as he speaks against Jordan strongly for portraying Michael Collins without knowing

a thing about drama from his past movies. Kauffmann argues against Jordan’s right to make the

film and not the value of the film itself. But instead of being a burden, it shows that even

amongst those that claim to be bipartisan and objective, there are heavy emotions in regards to


                                                Works Cited

Ebert, Roger. "Michael Collins :: :: Reviews." :: Movie

       Reviews, Essays and the Movie Answer Man from Film Critic Roger Ebert. Web. 26 Jan.



Kauffmann, Stanley. "A Lost Leader." UCF Libraries. Web. 26 Jan. 2011.





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