Synopsis by Mark Deming
The ugly conflict between Irish and British forces in Northern Ireland provides the backdrop for this drama set in the early 1970s. Michael Flaherty (Craig Wasson) is an American of Irish descent who, after returning home from a tour of duty in Vietnam, is deciding what to do with his life. Since his childhood, Michael's grandfather Seamus (Sterling Hayden) has told him of his glorious younger days in Ireland, when he fought against the British with the Irish Republican Army. Michael decides to go to Belfast to help the battle for home rule, but he soon finds out that he's not welcomed by many of the locals. He's considered more important as a symbol than as a soldier or an activist -- so much so that the IRA plans to have him killed in a way that can be blamed on British forces in order to help elicit financial support from wealthy Americans. The Outsider was primarily filmed in Dublin, while several of the American sequences were shot in Detroit.
war, against-all-odds, America, Britain, independence, IRA (Irish Republican Army), Ireland, Irish-American, martyrdom, patriotism, politician, rebel, revolution, soldier, struggle, torture