Hunger, by British artist and director Steve McQueen and Irish writer Enda Walsh, is a graphically violent, deeply brooding film about IRA volunteer Bobby Sands (Michael Fassbender), who led a hunger strike in 1981 aimed at improving conditions for IRA prisoners and regaining their status as political prisoners. Sands had been convicted of handgun possession and sentenced to fourteen years in prison. At the time, IRA prisoners were held together in one of several "H-Blocks," and began their protest with a "Blanket and No-Wash Protest" beginning in 1976.

The demands of the Irish prisoners during the hunger strikes seem, in retrospect, to be relatively minor: they sought to be recognized as political prisoners (prisoners of war), and as such to not be forced to wear prison uniforms, to not be forced to have work duty, to freely associate with other prisoners, and to be entitled to a weekly visit, parcel and letter.

categories Cinematical