Brendan Gleeson (In Bruges) takes the unorthodox cop character to the edge in the dark comedy The Guard. Meet Sergeant Gerry Boyle, one of Galway, Ireland's finest and dedicated cops. He takes care of business—so what does it matter if he has some drinks, maybe a few drugs, and dabbles with Dublin prostitutes while he's on the job every so often? When he comes across a dead man's body that could be linked to a half billion dollars of drug money, Boyle's rogue ways gets tested with the arrival of straight-laced FBI Agent Wendell Everett (Don Cheadle). Polar opposites, the two must team up for the investigation that tests the limits for each of them.
Writer/director John Michael McDonagh takes this fish-out-of-water tale and creates a uniquely playful escapade. His use of a backdrop of brightly colored sets and stark shots of the western Irish coast illuminates his comically brash script. Gleeson is cheekily wicked, dryly spouting outrageous lines as Cheadle, often on the receiving end of his unintentional quips, perfectly holds his own, keeping his regimented character in line even when Gleeson's Boyle crosses it repeatedly.