Saint Patrick’s day is my favorite. While the U.S. way of celebrating this holiday is not the same as it is celebrated in Ireland, it is still fun to see people getting some culture in their lives. Whether its drinking Guinness at your near by pub, taking shots of Jamison with friends while wearing green, or cooking some corned beef, cabbage, and potatoes, it’s all a good way to celebrate the Irish culture in general. For me, its cooking up the best corned beef and cabbage and watching a good movie. I love Irish food, Irish culture, and definitely Irish film. So if you are so inclined to chill inside this St. Patrick’s Day, here are a few films to get you through.
The Quiet Man (1952)
This film delivers a picturesque version of the Irish countryside. Starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara, this film has romance and comedy. The Quiet Man is a great way to see John Wayne out of his Western persona. This film won two Academy Awards, one for directing and the other for cinematography.
The Commitments (1991)
This film is about music, soul music and the Dubliners who want to play it. This is a colorful comedy that comments on the idea of doing what you love regardless of how people react. The acting is sub-par but the music is extraordinary.
If you missed out seeing the Oscar nominated Best Picture films, then here is your chance to see one. Brooklyn is a touching story about a young girl who moves to America from Ireland. The longing for home and the assimilation that follows is shown wonderfully through an ordinary character. The acting is great throughout this well written story.
Angela’s Ashes (1999)
This film is based on the autobiography of an Irish expat. Instead of leaving Ireland for America, the family in this film leaves America for Ireland following a sudden tragedy. This film is one of the more intense films on the list. Angela’s Ashes, stars Emily Watson and Robert Carlyle. Both are very talented actors in this gripping story. This film captures love, loss, and triumph in all its glory.
Finian’s Rainbow (1968)
This film is a classic. It’s a fantasy inclined musical starring Fred Astaire and Petula Clark. The film is charming and boasts great performances by the great Fred Astaire. Finian’s Rainbow is good fun comparable to that of Singin’ in the Rain. This film has everything for St. Patrick’s Day, dancing, a pot of gold, and a leprechaun.
This film is about Bobby Sands, an Irish republican, who leads his fellow prison mates in a hunger strike. Starring Michael Fassbender, Hunger is both artistic and unsettling. Brilliantly directed by Steve McQueen, this historical drama is powerful in imagery as the audience can literally see Sands start to waste away.
If you are looking for something a little more on the horror side, this film will do just fine. Leprechaun is your B-rated guilty pleasure. It is engaging and fun. This film is by far the greatest example of a “its so bad, its good” film. Plus, the audience gets to see a young Jennifer Aniston before she made it big.
Another comedy horror flick, Grabbers is a movie about an Irish town that is invaded by aliens and the only way to survive is to get drunk. There are laugh out loud moments accompanied with engaging performances. It can be good fun for a St. Patrick’s Day viewing.
Luck of the Irish (2001)
This is one of the better Disney Channel Original Movies. Who didn’t like Ryan Merriman as a jock turning into a Leprechaun? This movie allows you to learn about Irish heritage while also having fun. The acting is pretty good, even when surrounded by cheesy lines and low budget special effects.
P.S. I Love You (2007)
If looking for a sappy chick-flick this St. Patrick’s Day, P.S. I Love You is just that. The images of Ireland are pretty and Gerard Butler is gorgeous. Hilary Swank is not the best romantic comedy actress but you can tell her talents lie in a different genre. The story is cute, but lets be honest, we get to see and hear a sexy Gerard Butler.