The Quiet Girl

What’s that in my eye? Nothing! I’m no greeting, you’re greeting! It you want to see a purely wholesome film, go see The Quiet Girl. It’s about how children blossom when given love.

Cait is the 4th of 5 kids, and her mother has another on the way. Worn out from her feckless bastard of a husband, they agree to send her to her mother’s cousin for the summer. That way she will be out from underfoot when the new baby comes.

Cait is neglected. There is simply no time for her in a house so full of kids, and her penniless mother can only do so much when her drunken, cheating, gambling husband keeps the place in a state of filth and disrepair. She wets the bed, for which her exhausted mum can only scold her. Her sisters tease and humiliate her. She has no friends. She has retreated into herself, and frequently absconds from school and home. Out in the countryside, she wanders under trees and among the long grass, finding a beauty and solitude that is like a sanctuary.

Her father drops her off at her mother’s cousin’s in just the clothes she’s standing up in, an old, faded, and dirty sundress and a pair of sandals. Eibhlin takes her in, delighted to have a child in the house, and showers her with affection. She lets Cait be her quiet self, but gently encourages her to come out her shell. When Cait wets the bed, she is anxious what reaction she’ll get, but Eibhlin exclaims, ‘oh I forgot these are weeping mattresses, what am I thinking putting you on one of them?’ and I fell in love with her for it.

Sean, her husband, is less enthused. Not hostile, simply uninterested. But as time goes on, he sort of takes her in out the side of his eye, sees her good and steady temperament, and with apparent indifference, makes more and more overtures towards her friendship. He is a solid farmer, and he appreciates her quiet, watchful, and helpful nature.

As I say, this film is so wholesome, watching all three characters blossom into a family. It is a film about how you fall in live with your real family. So touching.