Fifty Dead Men Walking (2008)

Imdb Ranking 6.8

Based on a true story the movie is about Martin McGartland who is a 16 year old street hustler who couldn't get a real job in Protestant controlled 1986 Belfast. Martin is targeted by the RUC as someone who they could possibly turn in to an informer against the IRA.

The police pick him up and offer him some money to look at some pictures. but Martin won't go for it. The IRA in their ski masks enforce the laws in Belfast. No stealing or crimes against the community. When they pick up one of Martin's friends he tries to help, but they shoot his friend in the knees. The IRA tries to recruit Martin and he agrees to join.

When a soldier says something to him, and then kicks him, Marty punches him out. It was all a set up to bring Martin in. Fergus(Ben Kingsley) tell Martin that they know he met with Mickey Johnson, a person high up in the IRA. Fergus tells him this is about saving lives. Fergus offers him money and a car. Martin takes the money and the car.

Martin starts feeding Fergus more and more information while at the same time getting more and more involved in the IRA. Both sides warn him about the torturing that the other side will do to him if they catch him. Marty and his friend Sean watch the IRA torture a possible informant for information. When they finally break him, they have Marty shoot him, but he hesitates and his friend Sean steps in and does it.

Martin is getting sworn in as a full member of the volunteers and he continues to give information to the RUC. Martin begins to move up and up in the organization. Mickey Johnson really likes him. Maty informs about hits, bombs and gun deliveries. It gets to the point where Marty doesn't know which side his sympathies are with.

Mickey drops by and starts asking Marty's girlfriend about the money Marty seems to have. In the nest job, a pub massacre, only Marty and one other IRA member, Grace, know the pub where the prison wardens will go after they play rugby. Marty and his family is supposed to be whisked away to security, but MI5 takes it over and leaves Mickey out in the cold. When the plan is broken up, the IRA knows that Marty is an informer.

The IRA pick up Marty and start to torture him. Sean jumps out the apartment window and Fergus picks him up and gets an ambulance to bring him to the hospital. Fergus then moves him when he thinks the IRA is coming after him and brings him to his house.

In 1999 Marty was shot 6 times by an IRA hit man, but he survived.

The movie was in many ways like another true story, Donnie Brasco, where Johnny Depp played a police officer who infiltrates the mob, and begins to empathize with the people he was trying to put away. In Fifty Dead Men Walking it is even harder to decide who the good guys are. Both sides use brutal methods to achieve their goals, and like most movies about the "troubles" there are no real winners here.

The title of the movie and of the book by Martin McGartland us the number of people Martin thinks are living because of the information he gave on the IRA. Hero or villain, it all depends on your point of view. Overall, a pretty depressing movie.