Borstal Boy (film)

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Borstal Boy
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Peter Sheridan
Produced by Jim Sheridan
Pat Moylan
Written by Novel
Brendan Behan
Peter Sheridan
Nye Heron
Starring Shawn Hatosy
Danny Dyer
Lee Ingleby
Michael York
Music by Stephen McKeon
Cinematography Ciarán Tanham
Edited by Stephen O'Connell
Distributed by Strand Releasing
Release date
  • 1 March 2002 (2002-03-01)
Running time
93 min.
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Budget $100,000
Box office $87,400

Borstal Boy is a 2000 British/Irish romantic drama film adaptation of the Brendan Behan autobiographical novel of the same name. The film is written and directed by Irish playwright Peter Sheridan.


In 1941, 16-year-old IRA volunteer Brendan Behan (Shawn Hatosy) is going on a bombing mission from Ireland to Liverpool during the Second World War. His mission is thwarted when he is apprehended, charged and imprisoned in Borstal, a reform institution for young offenders in East Anglia, England. At Borstal, Brendan is forced to live face-to-face with those he regarded as his enemies, a confrontation that reveals a deep inner conflict in the young Brendan and forces a self-examination that is both traumatic and revealing. Events take an unexpected turn and Brendan is thrown into a complete spin. In the emotional vortex, he finally faces up to the truth.


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