Paths to Freedom

RTE Two (ended 2000)


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Episode Guide


  • Season 1
    • Spin the Bottle
      Spin the Bottle
      Episode 7
      "I'm still Rats from the flats," says the film's tagline and 'Spin the Bottle' opens with our hero (yet again) being released from Mountjoy Prison. Having evaded the attentions of a psychotic Northern inmate, (in the process resurrecting the 'anti-Nordie' vein of humour that was one of 'Paths to Freedom's highlights) Rats heads back to the Corpo estate and his ailing mother. The heroically dimwitted Tommo (McDonald) has become her surrogate son and Brainer (O'Kelly), Spermdotcom's third member (ooh-er), has shacked up with camp death metal band Satan's Cock. Rats' aunt is in dire need of a trip to Lourdes and Tommo's regular donations to the fund mean that Rats is sleeping on the couch. Once again our hero needs money and success to prevail. 'Spin the Bottle' wears its tiny budget on its sleeve. The use of locations is sparing and the camerawork is occasionally uncertain. There are one or two technical howlers that would not have made the final cut of a better-funded production. But the script has enough good one-liners to keep it moving along, and the performances are generally of a high standard, particularly the late Pat Leavy as Rats' long-suffering mother - "My Rats is very sensitive…and a bit mental." The film could have chosen a few of its targets better (is there really any mileage left in Christian folk groups and heavy metal bands?) and some of the performances are below par - Simon Delany's Drogheda accent wobbles and Louis Walsh manages to make a hash of playing himself. But the well-meaning stupidity of Rats wins out in the end and McElhatton invests enough emotion in his child-like creation to make the budding romance with Bronagh Gallagher's character almost moving.moreless
    • Programme 6
      Programme 6
      Episode 6
      It is the final month for both Rats and Jeremy to be under the cameras and Rats is set to take to the stage again with his band. Jeremy has taken up residency at his local golf club on the seventh green.
    • Programme 5
      Programme 5
      Episode 5
      The first day of shooting's video takes place. Over in Dublin 4, Jeremy is becoming increasingly pre-occupied with proving that the asylum seeker is looking to destroy his life.
    • Programme 4
      Programme 4
      Episode 4
      Rats finally comes face to face with Sharon, who is not exactly overjoyed. Meanwhile, Jeremy faces a Fitness To Practise Committee, and eventually takes refuge in a tent in his back garden.
    • Programme 3
      Programme 3
      Episode 3
      Rats, Jeremy, Helen and Mrs. Doyle discuss the effects that imprisonment has had on their lives.Jeremy finds it difficult to get his book, Women Inside Out, published and realises he has to explore other avenues while Rats and Tomo head for Belfast.
    • Programme 2
      Programme 2
      Episode 2
      Jeremy experiences an increasing sense of frustration, both with his book and life in general. In the first couple of weeks of freedom Rats found a security job difficult to hold down - and was sacked for being a bit overzealous to say the least, so he finds new employment at a Smiley Burger restaurant.moreless
    • Programme 1
      Programme 1
      Episode 1
      In the first episode Jeremy is determined to return to the life he once had with his wife, Helen and to putting all his energy into his new book "Women Inside Out". Meanwhile, on his first day of freedom, Rats finds that his wife Sharon has left him.
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