Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square


Year: 2001
Country: Ireland
Run Time: 103 minutes

This multiculturally-cross-pollinated melange smoothly transposes a Chinese fable to Ireland in 1924, with the gifted Yugoslav director of "The Powder Keg" (23rd CIFF, 1998) as your storyteller. HOW HARRY BECAME A TREE is a cuttingly-sardonic tale about something fundamentally unfunny: hatred. Colm Meany stars as Harry Maloney, a weathered cabbage farmer of the Irish town of Skillet, who has lost one son to the Troubles and his wife to heartbreak. Consequently Harry decides that enmity is a stronger force in the world than love; therefore a man's worth is measured by the size of his foes. Thinking big, Harry decides to ?better? his lot by choosing the village's most powerful man ? George, the neighborhood pub owner/shopkeeper/entrepeneur ? as his mortal nemesis, even though George has given him no personal offense. Not even a vivid nightmare in which he mutates into a tree (providing lumber to make coffins) tells the cantankerous Harry which way the sap is running, as the scheming Maloney embarks on a deliberate campaign of manipulation, slander and innuendo against George. Harry's secret weapon is his doltish surviving son Gus who chances to fall in love with Eileen, a comely customer in another one of George's sideline business matchmaking. Initially Harry is outraged, but then he sees the union as the means to bring about George's downfall. Tragedy looms, as Harry's venomous bite proves to be as bad as his bark.

Goran Paskaljevic, Christine Gentet, Stephen Walsh (adapted from the story ?Lao Dan? by Yang Zhengsung)

Goran Paskaljevic

Riccardo Tozzi, Liam O?Neill, Clive Parsons, Antoine de Clerment-Tonnerre

Milan Spasic

Petar Putnikovic

Principal Cast
Colm Meany, Cilian Murphy, Adrian Dunbar, Kerry Condon, Pat Luffan

Film Contact
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