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Troubles Cinema, AU: Nothing Personal

Centre for Irish Studies Autumn Seminar and Film Series 2018

2018.09.04 | Sanne Overgaard Larsen

Date Wed 21 Nov
Time 18:30 22:00
Location Nobelparken Building 1481, room 341


The fourth film in our Irish film series 'Troubles Cinema' will be taking place on November 11 at 18.30 in Nobelparken, building 1481 room 341. The film series is constituted of five film screenings with companion lectures. All events are fuelled by snacks and followed by discussions.    

Tonight CISA is hosting a film screening of Nothing Personal (1995), welcoming our guest, Prof. Henrik Vigh, Department of Anthropology at the University of Copenhagen, for an introduction.


Most people know or have heard of the Irish underground army IRA, but the Protestant paramilitary is far less investigated and cinematically explored. Often, the Protestant paramilitary is made out to be dim-witted violent psychopaths, which has great consequences as to how they and the Protestant working class been  involved in the peace process since. Henrik Vigh, Professor of anthropology, has made ethnographic fieldwork with one of the biggest Protestant paramilitary organisations: the Ulster Volunteer Force. In the introductory talk for the film, he will try to broaden the perspective on the paramilitary and explain how you can understand the phenomenon ‘Protestant paranoia’. 

About the film

Director: Thaddeus O'Sullivan, 1995

The scene of action is Belfast in the year 1975 when Catholic and Protestant paramilitary terrorise both each other and the general public. An IRA bomb explodes in a Protestant area without warning, and a group of people – roughly based on the real group ‘Shankill Butchers’ – takes to the streets to avenge themselves onto any Catholic they can find. This is how the two childhood friends Kenny and Liam are brought together – when Kenny’s men coincidentally kidnap Liam. In general, the film clearly depicts the spiral of violence without an end, and in the encounter, we see how the spiral forces friends apart and propels the next generation into the hatred, even if they have a wish for peace.

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