Archive of films Blind Flight / Blind Flight

United Kingdom
2003, 92 min

Section: Another View
Year: 2004

A film based on a true story. In Lebanon in 1986, Irish teacher of English Brian Keenan was abducted and held by Muslim fundamentalists for nearly five years before being released.  


Lebanon, 1985. Irishman Brian Keenan is an English teacher who arrived in Beirut from Belfast five months earlier. One fateful day he leaves home to go and teach. But in front of his house he encounters a foursome of Muslim fundamentalists; they throw him in the trunk of a car and cart him off to an unknown destination. His captors insist that he be blindfolded whenever they communicate with him. At first, out of protest, Brian refuses to eat. In his isolation many memories come to him: of his childhood, of his own split society. After some time he is transferred to another location, and there he meets fellow prisoner John McCarthy, an Englishman with whom he will spend four long years. Mere pieces on the chessboard of international politics, the two men are separated by a seemingly unbridgeable gap of understanding due to their entirely different backgrounds and characters. The stubborn, working-class Irishman, who went to Lebanon to escape from Belfast, stands in sharp contrast to the young and charming Englishman, a journalist who ironically comments on his fellow captive.

About the director

John Furse has been working in the film and television industries for 25 years as a producer, documentarist and screenwriter. In 1990 he placed himself among the most promising English screenwriters with scripts for Hellbent and Conversations With an Executioner. He has produced and written Michael Grigsby’s documentaries Living on the Edge (1987, Special Jury Prize at Houston 1988) and The Time of Our Lives (1995 BAFTA nomination). For the BBC he wrote and directed the documentaries Helen Bamber-On The Trail of Torture and Looks That Kill. Blind Flight is his first feature. The director commented on the film: “I met Brian for the first time shortly after he was released, and John was still a prisoner. We spent six weeks together on our own in the West of Ireland and he unburdened himself of the story. It was an extraordinary experience because I was the first, and remain the only, person who both guys have trusted with their experience. For me, the writing of the script was like having somebody present their broken mirror to you and you put it together for them in a way that they feel makes sense.” 


Moviehouse Entertainment
11 Denmark Street, WC2H 8LS, London
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 207 836 5536
E-mail: [email protected]

About the film

Color, 35 mm

Section: Another View
Director: John Furse
Screenplay: John Furse, Brian Keenan
Dir. of Photography: Ian Wilson
Music: Stephen McKeon
Editor: Kristina Hetherington
Producer: Sally Hibbin
Production: Parallax Pictures
Cast: Ian Hart, Linus Roache
Contact: Moviehouse Entertainment

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