Entertainment

Irish Films Everyone Needs to See

Sásta Lá Fhéile Pádraig or Happy St. Patrick’s Day for all my non-Irish speaking readers. In honor of the holiday weekend, I’ve compiled a list of some of my favorite Irish films I think you will all enjoy well after the kegs of green beer have been emptied and the last Irish potato has been eaten.

From dramas to romance, here are a few beautiful films set against the stunning backdrop of the Emerald Isle.

The Quiet Man

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What It’s About: A retired American boxer travels to the Irish village he was born in to claim his family home and start a new life and find new love.

Why You Should Watch: The Quiet Man and St. Patrick’s Day go together like Santa and Christmas and fireworks and the Fourth of July. This timeless tale of romance, friendship, and redemption has captured the hearts of millions. From the brilliant performances of John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara to the breathtakingly beautiful shots of the Irish countryside, it is no wonder that this iconic classic film’s fan base spans generations. You’ll want to watch it again and again well past the end of March.

Leap Year

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What It’s About: When bad weather strands her on Ireland’s west coast, a young American woman teams up with surly yet charming Irishman, so she get to Dublin and propose to her boyfriend on leap day.

Why You Should Watch: If rom-coms and Hallmark Channel-style love stories are your jam, Leap Year is the film for you. It is chock full of witty banter, will-they-won’t-they tension, and a running gag about a suitcase named Louie. With sparks flying from the moment they meet, you’ll be rooting for Anna to kick her current bland beau to curb for Irish hottie Declan. Okay, the film gets some flack for its lack of knowledge about Irish geography, but it makes up for it with charm and serious dose of fluffy goodness.

The Secret of Kells

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What It’s About: A young boy, who apprentices scriptorium of the local monastery, is tasked by a master illustrator to complete an ancient yet unfinished magical book in the face of a pending barbarian attack.

Why You Should Watch: To put it simply, The Secret of Kells is a stunning piece of animation. Heavily influenced in the artistic style of early Irish monks, this film expertly blends fantasy and history to weave a tale about how the iconic Book of Kells was created. Throw in a lovable forest sprite and boy trying to find his purpose and you have a movie that is so much more than a kids’ flick.

Calvary

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What It’s About: A good-hearted priest wrestles with his cynical community and his own soul when he is threatened by a parishioner during confession.

Why You Should Watch: Calvary is a haunting film that grapples with the human condition. Every character, including the threatened priest, is seriously messed up in their own way. They lie. They deceive. Some are just really crappy people. Yet, you can’t help but root for all of them to somehow see the errors of their ways. Throw in a seriously dark mystery and you have a film that will leave you thinking long after the credits stop rolling.

The Secret of Roan Inish

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What It’s About: A young girl is sent to live with her grandparents in quiet fishing village where she begins to unravel her family’s mysterious connection to a mythical Irish creature.

Why You Should Watch: Despite being set in the real world, The Secret of Roan Inish tells the story of the of the mythical selkie (aka Irish seal people) in such a way that you will be if they actually exist. Plus, Little Fiona is a super sweet little girl that will endear herself to you from opening credits to closing credits.

Waking Ned Devine

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What It’s About: After a neighbor dies right after winning the lottery, a quirky village bands together to convince the claim inspector his is still alive, so they can cash in and split the money.

Why You Should Watch: Who doesn’t love a cast of quirky yet lovable characters who band together to pull off a hair-brained scheme? Not only is it impossible to not root for this cohort of townsfolk as they try to pull one over on the outside inspector, your heart will be warmed with the little connections everyone has with the deceased Ned. You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll be singing The Parting Glass for days.

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Fictional Guy February Day Twenty-Eight: Conrad Hawkins from “The Resident”

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ER had Dr. Clooney. Grey’s Anatomy gave us Dr. McDreamy and Dr. McSteamy. Now, The Resident is bringing badass back to the world of medicine in the form of Dr. Conrad Hawkins. As the top senior resident at Chastain Park Memorial Hospital, Conrad has earned quite a reputation among hospital administrators and staff for his unconventional methods when it comes to treating the patients the come through the emergency room doors. Better at breaking the rules than following them, he cares deeply and will do whatever it takes to make sure the people he treats get the best care possible. He is not afraid to speak out when he feels care is being compromised by corrupt practices behind the scenes, which has caused some serious friction with senior doctors on staff. The first-year residents dread being assigned to him, because this arrogant hardass seems to delight in breaking them down over every little thing. They don’t understand the method to Conrad’s madness. His goal is to shake them out of their medical school mindsets and realize that medicine isn’t practiced out of textbook. He sees it as his mission to help them break out of their little boxes to become real doctors. Yet, Conrad is not as invincible as everyone thinks he is. Years of long hours and giving everything to his patients day in and day out have left him with the weight of the world on his shoulders and struggling to disentangle himself emotionally from difficult cases. With recent developments revealing more and more cracks in his armor, it looks like a breakdown may be on the horizon. However, don’t count him out just yet. Conrad may not be Superman, but this everyday hero is not quite ready to turn in his cape.

Love Conrad? Share your thoughts below.

 

Fictional Guy February Day Twenty-Seven: Dmitry from “Anastasia”

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Some Broadway boys capture your heart from the moment you see them on stage. You fall in love with the whole package of the character from the way they carry themselves to the way they emote in every scene and song. Then, there are the characters you fall for purely from a musical’s soundtrack. With a few notes, they weave together a fictional guy that is irresistible. For me, Dmitry from the musical version of Anastasia definitely falls in the latter category. From the moment you first meet him, Dmitry is an interesting guy. On one hand, he is kind of an ass.  He’s an admitted liar and con looking for a pay day. His whole reason for assisting Anya in her quest to see if she is a long lost princess is to extort money from her grandmother. Yet, as the show progresses and he reveals more about his past and who he is, the layers begin to fall away. Much like Anya, he was forced to survive on his own as a child after losing his parents. As they grow closer and he begins to fall in love, something inside him begins to shift. Dmitry softens towards Anya’s cause and becomes her source of familiarity in an unfamiliar world. Dmitry even becomes willing to sacrifice his chance with her along with everything he’s worked for in exchange for her happiness. While his methods may skirt morality, Dmitry will make you believe that even s con man can be a hero.

Love Dmitry? Share your thoughts below.