Set in Rural Ireland, the film introduces Bull McCabe (Richard Harris) and his son Tadgh (Sean Bean). Bull rents and lords a field, maintaining it like many generations before him. We learn that Bull is quite passionate about his field and one day hopes he will be able to own it and pass it on to his son to keep the family legacy going.
However, when the field is put up for auction to the highest bidder, Bull is outraged and offended. Now, Bull will do everything to ensure he obtains what he feels is rightfully his. Bull begins to obtain as much money as possible in preparation, but word soon hits the community that a rich American man plans to buy the field, no matter the price. The arrival of the mysterious American also forces Bull to make choices that will have impacting consequences. Can Bull succeed in obtaining what he feels is his?
The Field is best described as a drama film with excellent and dramatic performances, including the lead character, Bull, played by Richard Harris. Side performances from actors Sean Bean and John Hurt are also praiseworthy. The opening, while slow to begin with, is very informative with its storytelling. We learn about the hard work Bull does each day, but more importantly, we gain a clear understanding of Bull’s heart, passion, and his deep desire for the field, and it’s evident that this desire had been birthed within him a long time ago.
The pacing of this film is great. It’s informative, to begin with, about Bull’s desires, and once he discovers that the field is going for auction, I found myself deeply invested, wanting to see how far Bull would go to try and claim it for himself and his bloodline. Bull finds himself in various situations and problems, adding more fuel and rage within him, all building to a strong story and a bigger conclusion. As a character, I loved seeing how Bull was always scheming and consistently planning his next step and plan of attack, keeping the film interesting and engaging for viewers. Visually, those who love and admire stunning moments of scenery, great costumes and set design will also be pleased with all the minor details on display.
Overall, this film was received poorly by cinephiles and film critics when it was first released. However, after watching this film for the first time, I’m proud to say I adored it and admired everything it is. It’s a powerful story of a man who will do everything and anything it takes to claim what he feels belongs to him. The Field is filled with excellent and unforgettable performances from Richard Harris, stunning moments of scenery, great costume designs and most importantly, dramatic and unpredictable moments, including the climax. The Field is one drama film that shouldn’t be missed.