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Ireland, United Kingdom · 2008
1h 36m
Director Steve McQueen
Starring Michael Fassbender, Stuart Graham, Liam Cunningham, Helena Bereen
Genre Drama, History

For IRA political prisoners in 1981, the body is the last resource for protest. This brutal and violent historical drama tells the story of Bobby Sands, who led hunger strikes in the Maze prison as he prepared to pay the ultimate price for liberation.

Stream Hunger

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What are critics saying?


Los Angeles Times by

The first-time director's unflinching camera, deliberate pacing and maddeningly long takes just amplify the story's innate harshness and test audience endurance levels.


The New York Times by A.O. Scott

The brutality in the film is pervasive and often stomach turningly graphic, but what is perhaps most unnerving is the tact, patience and care with which Mr. McQueen depicts its causes and effects.


Chicago Reader by Andrea Gronvall

The fulcrum of this deeply humanist work is an extended two-shot of the strike's leader, Bobby Sands (Michael Fassbender), as he converses with a priest (Liam Cunningham); the virtuosic sequence encapsulates the whole sorry history of a horrific civil war.


New York Magazine (Vulture) by David Edelstein

The movie is a political remake of "The Passion of the Christ," only more aestheticized: It's rigorous, evocative, and, in spite of its grisly imagery, elegant. It's a triumph--of masochistic literal-mindedness.


The A.V. Club by Noel Murray

Hunger may be criticized for being willfully arty, or for reducing a complex political situation to a broadly allegorical vision of martyrdom, but it's never less than visually stunning.

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