In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, Pierce Brosnan and the release of the new U2 CD, here is my list of my favorite Irish movies.
Janeane Garofalo stars as Marcy, the assistant to the bumbling Senator John McGlory who wants to get the Irish vote for his re-election campaign by establishing his Irish roots. So off to Ireland she goes to find his long-lost ancestors. But she arrives in Ballinagra Ireland just in time for the annual Matchmaking Festival. As a young single American, Marcy attracts the interest of several of the local gents. Especially the handsome Irish bartender, Sean.
That is the movie in a nutshell, but there are some really great moments. It’s funny and full of great Irish character actors likeand . You might not normally think of Janeane Garofalo as the romantic comedy type, but she is really good in this movie. Don’t miss as the cynical political aide.
This movie stars a great cast of Irish actors. They are SO Irish, that you almost need subtitles to understand some of the thick accents and local slang. But don’t let that put you off this movie. It is the story of a group of young Irish musicians who start a band. No… not that band. This is a band who wants to sing soul music.
The movie follows them through rehearsals, their ups and downs to local success and a chance to sing for Otis Redding . Especially with the lead singer, who has a great voice, but a foul attitude. Alan Parker brings out the best in this group of unknown actors to show how hard it is to become a success in the music business.
The Secret of Roan Inish
Director and a great storyteller, John Sayles made this haunting Irish tale of a 10-year-old girl named Fiona who is going to live with her grandparents in a small fishing village in Donegal Ireland. She learns the local legend about one her an ancestor who marries a Selkie – a seal who can turn into a human.
Years earlier, she starts to believe that a naked little boy on the abandoned Isle of Roan Inish might be her brother who washed out to sea as a baby. Fiona then takes on the investigation of uncovering The Secret of Roan Inish. You will love the beautiful cinematography of the Irish seaside.
Laws of Attraction
How could I write about Irish movies without including my favorite Irishman, The Thomas Crown Affair and this movie, in which he stars with Julianne Moore. They play a pair of battling New York divorce attorneys who face each other in the courtroom over a big case involving an eccentric fashion designer (Parker Posey) and a wild Irish rock star (Micheal Sheen). NO, not that rock star…he is still happily married, thank you.? Pierce’s production company, Irish DreamTime had put some of his smaller projects like Evelyn, The Matador,
Things get heated up when the two lawyers head to Ireland to get possession of a castle for their respective clients. After a few, well quite a few drinks, some crazy Irish dancing, the two opposing counsels find themselves married. You get the idea. It is a bit reminiscent of Tracy and Hepburn in Adam’s Rib, but that’s not an Irish movie, so we will save that movie for another time.
OK… Dear Frankie is a Scottish movie, but I just had to include it. First of all, it stars the gorgeous Gerard Butler (P.S. I Love You) who has some Irish ancestry. If that is not enough, it is a such a lovely heartwarming movie you won’t be able to resist it. Dear Frankie is a single mom and her 9-year-old son. Young Frankie is deaf and he loves to receive letters from his absentee dad, who is supposedly a sailor.
I don’t want to spoil the story for you, but is becomes necessary for his mother, played by Emily Mortimer to find a substitute father for Frankie. Enter the rough and rugged Gerard, ready to save the day.
A co-worker told me about this delightful movie and I have since recommended it to several of my friends. They all love it and you will too.