Directed by John Crowley and based on Mark O'Rowe's screenplay (Howie the Rookie), Intermission is a brassy rather adroit comedy drama set in modern urban Dublin. In the first of a series of elliptical narratives, we are introduced to Lehiff (Farrell) a 'Begbie'-like character who has designs on settling down after he completes a fairly big score. Hot on his trail is the cop who fancies himself as a maverick, Detective Jerry Lewis (Colm Meaney), a self-proclaimed 'lawman on the edge', keeping the streets safe for average folks.
Then there's John (Cillian) who broke up with his girlfriend Deirdre (Kelly Macdonald) on a whim and is disgusted to learn that she's taken up with another bloke, Sam (McElhatton) almost immediately. Livid, he's determined to forget about her, or at the very least, gain some sort of revenge but his mate Seamus has more pressing concerns - he just wants to get laid.
A film with wide flashy arches rather than close definition, Intermission requires its audience to leave its belief at the door of the theatre. Having said that, if you're prepared to roll with the narrative conveniences that the film is dependent on - according to this, everyone in Dublin seems to move in precisely the same social circles - then Intermission has its merits and plenty of them. This won't be news if you're familiar with his theatre work, but O'Rowe is a fiercely talented writer, witty, direct and searingly honest, while Crowley is very comfortable with the actors, with Farrell and Meaney the standout performers.