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Irina Palm - Marianne Faithfull, Miki Manojlovic, Kevin Bishop, Sam Garbarski

Threat advisory: Elevated - Significant risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

Middle-aged Maggie (Marianne Faithfull) must find a way to get enough money for her grandson's lifesaving medical treatment. With all financial resources exhausted, Maggie tries her best to lift the dwindling hopes of her only son Tom (Kevin Bishop) and his wife Sarah (Siobhan Hewlett).

When a Hostess Wanted sign catches her eye, Maggie naively stumbles into a city sex club. The true job description is quite a surprise for the respectable, middle-class widow, even if she isn't a prude. But unskilled Maggie accepts this as her fastest way to urgently needed cash and her very last option, having already sold her own home to pay for little Ollie's (Corey Burke) hospital bills.

Shy Maggie has a rough start at Sexy World, more than just a train ride from her conservative suburb. Wisecracking colleague Luisa shows her the ropes and the two women strike a touching friendship. Tough guy owner Miki (Miki Manojlovic), a real ladies' man, reveals a soft spot for dutiful Maggie, and transforms her into the much-in-demand and lucrative Irina Palm. Maggie courageously proves to herself that she's not so old and useless after all.

Theatrical propaganda posters

Irina Palm theatrical one sheet image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film drama UK sex work club prostitute housewife grandmother terminal illness masturbate glory hole wank English village

Persons of interest

  • Marianne Faithfull .... Maggie/Irina Palm
  • Miki Manojlovic .... Miki
  • Kevin Bishop .... Tom
  • Siobhan Hewlett .... Sarah
  • Dorka Gryllus .... Luisa
  • Jenny Agutter .... Jane
  • Corey Burke .... Ollie
  • Meg Wynn Owen .... Julia
  • Susan Hitch .... Beth
  • Flip Webster .... Edith
  • Jonathan Coyne .... Dave
  • Tim Plester .... Frank
  • Malina Ebert .... Dunia
  • Ibrahima Sano .... Ibrahim
  • Philippe Blasband .... Screenwriter
  • Sam Garbarski .... Screenwriter
  • Martin Herron .... Screenwriter
  • Sam Garbarski .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

  • Irina Palm official movie site
  • Irina Palm film production notes
  • Irina Palm QuickTime movie trailers
  • Awards and film festivals:
  • Studios and distributors:

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Irina Palm is the kind of horrendous English kitchen sink drama in which small people leading small lives suffer heart-breaking tragedy. And then things take a turn for the worse.

The really fun thing about this film is that you learn that there is no such thing as rock bottom because, just as soon as you think that you've hit it, you find that there's even further that you can fall. Got a grandson with a terminal disease? Got to sell your house to pay for doctors' bills? Got to send him overseas for medical treatment? Got to find work to raise $10,000 with only the skills you learned as a housewife? Sucks to be you.

The old, grey mare just ain't what she used to be but, fortunately, there's life in the old girl yet. Marianne Faithfull looks and sounds like she's been chewed up and spat out by life only to be ruminated at the last minute but a lifetime of moisturising has left her hands as soft as a baby's bottom. And we know what men like... [Best stop that metaphor right there. - Director of Intelligence.] Kevin Bishop continues to be cute and is making good advances from his Spanish apartment (L'auberge espagnole) days.

At no point does Sam Garbarski let his actors get bogged down by maudlin banalities (he doesn't even let us know what the illness is, an unusual circumstance in these days of Emergency Doctor Medical Hospital House Call TV shows) and even throws in some big laughs (unusual in a film about kiddies dying of incurable diseases). At no point does the sun shine for more than three minutes (this is England, remember). At no point does Maggie/Irina become a joke (although the punters do, but they are a joke as any working girl can tell you).

Anyhow, Irina Palm is the kind of movie to make you thank your stars that you're not (a) English, (b) old, (c) trying to save a family member from a terminal illness. I didn't enjoy watching it but I did like it.

The drama, UK movie Irina Palm is directed by Sam Garbarski and stars Marianne Faithfull, Miki Manojlovic, Kevin Bishop.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Languages: English
  • Picture: Widescreen
  • Special features:
    • Interviews: 40 minutes with director and actors
    • Trailers: Theatrical

Government security censorship classification

MA 15+ (Strong sexual activity, strong sexual references)

Surveillance time

99 minutes (1:39 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 20 September 2007
DVD rental: 14 May 2008

Cinema surveillance images

Irina Palm movie imageIrina Palm movie imageIrina Palm movie imageIrina Palm movie image

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