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Get Ready to Cry Over Colin Farrell and His Donkey

Just ... be aware.

Colin Farrell as Pádraic hanging out with Jenny the Donkey in the Banshees of Inisherin

Spoilers for The Banshees of Inisherin lie ahead.

The Banshees of Inisherin seemed right out the gate like a movie that’d make you laugh, because it was written and directed by Martin McDonagh. And it brought back our favorite duo of Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson as two friends who are going through a friendship breakup. All of it was ripe for laughter. Instead, we watched as Pádraic (Farrell) came to terms with losing his friend—as well as his beloved donkey, Jenny. Previously, Farrell and Gleeson were in McDonagh’s film In Bruges, which fans still watch, and it still contributes to their love of both actors. While The Banshees surprisingly hits all these emotional beats throughout the film, it is an emotional journey you might not be ready for.

So as you’re gearing up to finish watching all those Oscar-nominated movies, we just want you to prepare yourself for what you’re going to experience during The Banshees of Inisherin. Shockingly, it’s not all about two friends breaking up with each other.

The movie takes us through Colm’s (Gleeson) decision to end his friendship with Pádraic. The two used to work, go get drinks at the pub, and spend all their free time together—until, suddenly, Colm wanted out. That alone will bring tears to your eyes, because you can see how much their relationship meant to Pádraic. But the reality is that Pádraic’s relationship with Jenny the Donkey—and what happens to her—has oddly stayed with me the longest. Maybe because I love my pet cat very much and would fight anyone who hurt him. It does mess with you a bit, especially if you’re a pet owner.

So let’s talk about Jenny and the justice that she deserves after watching The Banshees of Inisherin.

Related: Colin Farrell Is a Character Actor in a Leading Man’s Body on The Escapist

Justice for Jenny

One of my biggest fears as a pet owner is that I’m going to come home, and my cat will have eaten something he shouldn’t have, and he’ll be dead because I wasn’t here to see it. It’s morbid, weird, and a testament to how much I love this stupid fur ball who I’ve chosen to label as my son. But that fear became a reality for Pádraic, all because of Colm and his outlandish acts to push Pádraic out of his life.

To be fair to Colm, Pádraic wasn’t listening. So I understand the extreme thoughts, but what Colm chooses to do shows exactly where Colm’s mental state is. At the start of the movie, he just cold-turkey stops hanging around Pádraic, and so obviously Pádraic is confused. They were best friends. But through the movie, Colm keeps telling him to leave him alone and that he hates him. He threatens to start cutting off his fingers if Pádraic doesn’t stop.

And that’s exactly what Colm does. It is a dividing force in their dynamic and forces Pádraic to realize just what Colm is willing to do to get rid of him. After one fight, Colm comes and throws his fingers at Pádraic’s door, but he’s not there. Who finds the fingers other than Jenny.

So when he comes home from being out, Pádraic discovers that Jenny has tried to eat one and choked on it and died. And here’s the thing: I’ve not stopped thinking about it. Because I’m so afraid of losing my own pet, it just stuck with me. It’s terrifying.

You will cry and it’s okay!

All this to say that The Banshees of Inisherin will make you cry on multiple levels. A lot of those moments could be for Pádraic if you’re the friend who got left behind, or maybe you’ll feel Colm’s decision to leave. Whatever it is, you’ll have an emotional connection to these two characters and to the end of their friendship.

But you will also cry about a donkey. So just … be aware.

(Featured image: Searchlight Pictures)

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She/Her. A writer who loves all things movies, TV, and classic rock. Resident Spider-Man expert, official Leslie Knope, actually Yelena Belova. Wanda Maximoff has never done anything wrong in her life. Star Wars makes her very happy. New York writer with a passion for all things nerdy. Yes, she has a Pedro Pascal podcast. And also a Harrison Ford one.