Tiger Raid | Out of sorts and out of place, two Irish mercenaries head for a Middle East showdown

Tiger Raid Damien Molony
(Image credit: Altitude)

Tiger Raid Damien Molony

Out of sorts and out of place

We’re somewhere in the Middle Eastern and hard-bitten Irish mercenaries Joe (Brian Gleeson, son of Brendan) and Paddy (Damien Molony) are bantering and wrangling as they travel towards the kidnapping raid of the title*, the tensions in their partnership becoming ever more pronounced as they reveal details of their blood-soaked, death-and-betrayal-haunted pasts.

If Joe and Paddy look and sound out of place in Tiger Raid, it’s because writer-director Simon Dixon has transplanted his source material, Mick Donnellan’s 2014 play Radio Luxembourg, from small-town Ireland to sun-baked Iraq. Dixon makes striking use of his desert landscapes, while Gleeson and Molony deliver fine performances, as does Sofia Boutella (Star Trek Beyond’s zebra-faced Jaylah) as their intended victim, but the film’s theatrical origins are all too apparent in the stagey dialogue and the plot makes no sense in its new location.

*Devised by the IRA as a way of coercing innocent civilians to plant car bombs, a tiger raid is a kidnapping where an abducted person’s loved ones are forced to carry out another crime to secure the victim’s release.

Certificate 18. Runtime 88 mins. Director Simon Dixon

Tiger Raid debuts on Sky Cinema Premiere on Tuesday 23 May. Available on DVD from Altitude Film Distribution.


Jason Best

A film critic for over 25 years, Jason admits the job can occasionally be glamorous – sitting on a film festival jury in Portugal; hanging out with Baz Luhrmann at the Chateau Marmont; chatting with Sigourney Weaver about The Archers – but he mostly spends his time in darkened rooms watching films. He’s also written theatre and opera reviews, two guide books on Rome, and competed in a race for Yachting World, whose great wheeze it was to send a seasick film critic to write about his time on the ocean waves. But Jason is happiest on dry land with a classic screwball comedy or Hitchcock thriller.