• Publication date: May 1, 2010

Two Continents; One Love A Tragic Love Story Spanning Five Decades

Veteran actor and director Richard Attenborough, whose filmmaking achievements include the historical epic �Gandhi� (1982), �Chaplin� (1992), and �Shadowlands� (1993) presents his latest picture: 2007�s �Closing the Ring,� a romantic drama spanning two continents and nearly five decades.

Veteran actor and director Richard Attenborough, whose filmmaking achievements include the historical epic �Gandhi� (1982), �Chaplin� (1992), and �Shadowlands� (1993) presents his latest picture: 2007�s �Closing the Ring,� a romantic drama spanning two continents and nearly five decades.

Longtime actress Shirley MacLaine, star of numerous classics including 1983�s Oscar Award winning �Terms of Endearment� and chick flick �Steel Magnolias� (1989) portrays just widowed Ethel Ann, a mother who is strangely unaffected by her husband Chuck�s (David Alpay) recent passing. Ethel perplexes attendees at her late husband�s funeral, especially her daughter Marie (Neve Campbell) by remaining outside during the eulogy, opting instead to smoke on the church�s stoop as she recovers from a hangover. Yet Ethel�s callousness has a deep cause, one that her daughter and other mourners are oblivious to.

One man, however, Jack (Christopher Plummer) fully understands Ethel�s emotionless reaction. In 1943 Jack, whose younger representation is depicted by Gregory Smith, embarked alongside best friends Chuck and Teddy (Stephen Amell) to fight in WWII. Chuck and Ethel (depicted by Mischa Barton in adolescence) were not yet dating, much less considering marriage. Her love interest at the time was Teddy, and before deployment the two secretly married in their small town.

Fearful of death and its consequences upon his new wife, Chuck agreed with Teddy to marry and support Ethel if he was killed in combat. Aside from Teddy and Chuck, Jack was the only other individual aware of this agreement. Unfortunately, Teddy�s B-17 bomber crashed over Belfast fatally injuring him and the plane�s other occupants. As promised, Chuck wedded Ethel and remained with her until death.

Their marriage, however, was not one of love but one of circumstance � a bitter fact that the couple endured each day. Also, while it is not necessarily wrong to marry a person for purely practical reasons, misleading a daughter regarding the true identity of her father is. After Chuck�s death Marie will discover that Teddy is her biological father, and that he died shortly after her conception.

Across the sea in Ireland, Quinlan (Pete Postlethwaite) and a na�ve young man named Jimmy (Martin McCann) search the crash site 48 years later. After scouring the area, a hillside where IRA rebels often dump their enemy�s bodies, Jimmy discovers a ring that survived the crash � a ring that belonged to Teddy. From this point forward Jimmy devotes himself to identifying the ring�s owner and returning it to the deceased�s one true love in America. As old friends and foreign strangers cross paths with Jack, Ethel, and Marie a decades long tragedy is finally brought to a close.

�Closing the Ring� is rated R for brief sexuality, nudity and violent images. Its runtime is 118 minutes.