Prime Video Review: 'Hard Times'

John Thomas

Pfizer comes to the rescue, or at least their product Viagra does. The small Irish village of Kilcoulin’s Leap, a once famous spa destination and home to the Holy Well, has fallen on hard times. The residents are disgruntled because tourists no longer flock here to enjoy the spa hotel or visit the well.

As a distraction, four residents have formed a band who perform Saturday nights at a near empty bar. Their leader, Podger Byrnes (Cornelius Clarke), is a postie, who by day drives around the countryside delivering mail. Danal O’Connell is the local mechanic who can fix anything and Tom Gaffeny (John Lynch) shares ownership of the spa hotel with his sister. Sean Casey (Clan Barry) is the fourth member of the band.

On his mail route one day, Podger notices a lorry with Pfizer painted on the side panels, enroute to the Pfizer warehouse. This gives him an idea. What if he and his three mates hijack the lorry containing the Viagra and then sell the drugs in Amsterdam – how profitable would that be?

Not one of his three pals want to participate, but eventually all come around to the idea – how else can they earn much needed money and maybe save the town in the process? Podger begins to plan the heist.

With few derailments, Podger’s plan succeeds. Now the four must decide what to do next. The decision becomes more urgent as the local authorities investigate the theft and with the arrival of Pfizer’s private police squad headed by their militant leader Cory Williams (Linda Hamilton).

First the four must hide the Pfizer lorry and then the metal drums of Viagra. The only place they can think of is to hide the drums down the Holy Well – no one would think to look there. The four also didn’t anticipate the arrival of the media who come to cover the largest heist in Irish history valued at $66 million.

The townsfolk are buzzing with the idea of the $2 million reward being offered by Cory for any information as to the whereabouts of the Viagra. The only thing the four thieves did right was to remove the lorry’s tracking device and dispose of it – or so they think. This device is what Cory and her team search for.

The four mates are slowly disposing of the lorry and occasionally checking on the drums in the well. They are so preoccupied that, when looking into the well, they fail to notice a foaming white substance floating around the partially submerged drums in the well water. In the meantime, the townsfolk are busily making tea, drinking water, filling their pets’ water bowls and having a grand time of it.

After an inspired massage at the hotel spa, the news anchor suggests his team return to Kilcoulin’s Leap at a later time to do a feature story on this charming Northern Ireland village with its delightful townsfolk and the delicious drinking water fresh from the sacred Holy Well. It seems that one hard time has left Kilcoulin’s Leap and another is on the way – all thanks to Pfizer.

 Hard Times (Holy Water) is directed by Tom Reeve (Credits: George and the Dragon, Diggity’s Treasure) and runs 94 minutes. It is a “must see” on YouTube for a hilarious romp set in the lovely scenery around Northern Ireland.


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