The Enigma of Frank Ryan (Dúcheist Frank Ryan) will be broadcast on TG4 30th April at 9.30 p.m.
Professor Des Bell, Film maker and Head of Academic Affairs at NCAD explores a human story of truly tragic proportions
THE ENIGMA OF FRANK RYAN is a sympathetic but searching exploration of the life of Frank Ryan (1902- 1944) - Irish Republican, International Brigade volunteer in Spain and Nazi collaborator in Berlin.
Frank Ryan's life (born Limerick 1902, died Dresden 1944) remains an enigma. The teenage IRA volunteer, dissident republican and Spanish International Brigade volunteer, ended his life working for the Nazis in wartime Berlin.
How could this be?
Desmond Bell's film explores a human story of truly tragic proportions. From an apartment in war ravaged Berlin Ryan reflects on his life, sharing his story with a young radio producer. After a failed attempt to return to Ireland by U Boat together with the head of the IRA, Ryan becomes trapped in Berlin. The contradiction between his political beliefs and his dependence on Nazi hospitality comes to haunt him.
Drawing upon Ryan's letters and journalism Bell has fashioned an engaging film which helps to illuminate the enigma that was Frank Ryan.