The Commitments

August 28th, 1991


The Commitments

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Still of Andrew Strong in The CommitmentsThe CommitmentsThe CommitmentsStill of Angeline Ball, Bronagh Gallagher and Maria Doyle Kennedy in The CommitmentsStill of Johnny Murphy in The Commitments

The travails of Jimmy Rabbitte to form the "World's Hardest Working Band," The Commitments, and bring soul music to the people of Dublin, Ireland.

Release Year: 1991

Rating: 7.4/10 (16,123 voted)

Director: Alan Parker

Stars: Robert Arkins, Michael Aherne, Angeline Ball

Jimmy Rabbitte, che vive di piccoli espedienti in un quartiere proletario di Dublino, si e' messo in testa di organizzare una band musicale per rinverdire i fasti del rythm&blues e del soul. Grazie ad un annuncio sul giornale, Rabbitte comincia a selezionare giovani dal lavoro precario ma pieni di talento: Dean, Fay, Outspan, l'occhialuto Steven , Clifford, Deco, il ciccione senza buone maniere ma con una grande voce, Billy il batterista e Joey "The lips", un bizzarro e maturo anziano suonatore di tromba che si vanta di aver suonato con famosi soul-singers. Aggrega anche Natalie, Imelda e Bernie, tre grintose ragazze, ottime coriste e molto sexy. Procuratisi a credito la strumentazione, cominciano le prove, massacranti, che impegnano tutti. Si inizia a suonare in pubblico, in capannoni e feste sociali: il gruppo sembra pervaso dal fuoco della musica e dell'ambizione...

Writers: Roddy Doyle, Dick Clement

Robert Arkins - Jimmy Rabbitte
Michael Aherne - Steven Clifford
Angeline Ball - Imelda Quirke
Maria Doyle Kennedy - Natalie Murphy (as Maria Doyle)
Dave Finnegan - Mickah Wallace
Bronagh Gallagher - Bernie McGloughlin
Félim Gormley - Dean Fay
Glen Hansard - Outspan Foster
Dick Massey - Billy Mooney
Johnny Murphy - Joey 'The Lips' Fagan
Ken McCluskey - Derek Scully (as Kenneth McCluskey)
Andrew Strong - Deco Cuffe
Colm Meaney - Jimmy Rabbitte, Sr.
Anne Kent - Mrs. Rabbitte
Andrea Corr - Sharon Rabbitte

Taglines: They had nothing to lose, they risked it all.


Official Website: Official site of the Commitments band |

Release Date: 28 August 1991

Filming Locations: Ardmore Studios, Herbert Road, Bray, County Wicklow, Ireland

Gross: $14,919,570 (USA)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

The pool hall in this movie was a place called Ricardo's (now called Camden Deluxe) on Camden Street south of Temple Bar. It is now a bar and the upstairs junk room where the band rehearse is Poolhall. The scene outside the hotel where Wilson Pickett was supposedly staying was filmed outside the Mansion House, which is the official residence of the Lord Mayor of Dublin.

Audio/visual unsynchronized: In the last club scene, an acoustic piano can clearly be heard, but only a Fender Rhodes piano is seen.

[Jimmy has been auditioning unimpressive musicians all day]
Smiths' Song Singer: [singing] I was happy in the haze of a drunken hour, but heaven knows I'm miserable now...
Jimmy Rabbitte: Yeah, I know how you feel.

User Review

How hope can elevate the hopeless


I must confess that this is my favorite movie of all time, and the music plays a large part of why I enjoy it so much. Don't expect stellar acting in this movie unless you want to be let down--though make no mistake, the acting is certainly adequate. The key players in this movie were not chosen for their acting abilities, but rather for their musical talent. The people you see on stage in the movie are the same people who play the music you hear. (If you appreciate soul music, do not pass up the chance to purchase The Commitments Vol. I and Vol. II.) And what a talented assembly of musicians they brought together for this movie. Most astonishing is the lead vocals of prodigy Andrew Strong (playing lead singer Deco Cuffe) whom, at 16 years old at the time of filming, possesses "a voice that Bob Geldof would starve for."

More than anything, this film is about hope. It is about the hopes and dreams of a handful of poor north side Dubliners striving to beat the odds and make something of themselves. The film follows the near-rise and eventual fall of a band that, on the verge of a record deal, could not bear to watch success interfere with their destiny to remain destitute.

But was destitution their destiny after all? "Success of the band was irrelevent," the main protagonist and band manager is told moments after the band breaks up. "You raised their expectations of life--you lifted their horizons!" And indeed, the epilogue reveals that, even though the band itself was a failure, virtually every band member had acheived a greater level of personal acheivement than they had hoped for before they had joined the band.

This is a movie about the raw appeal of soul music; it is a movie about Dubliners; it is a movie about the economic conditions in general that grip Ireland; it is a movie about poor folks who endlessly toil in the vain hope that they can make ends meet. But more than anything, it is a movie about how hope alone can be the ultimate salvation of of those who have nothing else to look forward to.


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