This country’s filmography is full of critically praised and star-making works that are well worth seeing again. Here, IMDb has ranked the finest.
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When it comes to critically praised movies outside of the United States, Ireland is one of the best places to look. The portrayals of Ireland’s history and life in specific cities by Irish filmmakers and novelists are frequently lauded by critics. Daniel Day-Lewis, Brendon Gleeson, and many other Irish actors have received critical acclaim for their roles in both American and Irish films.
Among the best of Irish cinema, there are a wide range of films that captivate spectators with their rich narratives, stunning vistas, and memorable soundtracks.
1. The Secret Of Kells (2009) – 7.6
In the ninth century Ireland, Brendan Gleeson lends his voice to an Oscar-nominated animated picture that tells a fantastic adventure story. Brendan, a little kid who lives in a monastery called Abbey of Kells, is the film’s protagonist. When a mystery man arrives with a book that claims to transform darkness into light, his journey starts.
The Secret of Kells’ fantasy fairytale vibe is enhanced by the film’s quirky 2D animation. Even though the characters’ designs are quite basic, they really come to life when placed in front of the breathtaking scenery. The film’s soundtrack was especially lauded by viewers for its enchanting and lyrical Celtic style.
2. The Magdalene Sisters (2002) – 7.7
They are transferred to the Magdalene laundries, which are Catholic facilities for “fallen women,” in Ireland. There, the three ladies are subjected to different sorts of violence and humiliation while under the care of the asylum.
There are parts in this story that are so dark and horrible that they’re almost unbearable to see. A tremendous sense of hope is conveyed by watching the three women’s resoluteness. Reflection on the power of religion and ideology is prompted by the film’s portrayal of a terrible period in Ireland’s recent history.
3. Belfast (2021) – 7.8
A working-class family during the Northern Ireland Troubles is depicted in Belfast.
As Jude Hill’s Buddy, a little boy struggling to comprehend the magnitude of the fight and how it is hurting his mother and father, Buddy’s story is portrayed.
As he tries to comprehend what is going on and keep his innocence, it is both invigorating and painful to behold.
In addition to Hill’s portrayal as Buddy, Jamie Dornan and Caitriona Balfe, who portray Buddy’s parents, also shine.
4. Rory O’Shea Was Here (2004) – 7.8
It’s Rory O’Shea Was Here: Michael, a young man with cerebral palsy, becomes friends with rebellious Rory, his new neighbor at Carrigmore Residential Home for the Disabled. His outlook on life transforms when they get to know each other.
Rory, played by James McAvoy, is a standout. As a result of his onscreen chemistry with Michael, played by Steven Robertson, the film is able to convey a pleasant story about friendship. The film’s careful depiction of handicap in a film was also lauded.
5. Once (2007) – 7.8
Films by John Carney are noted for combining compelling characters with excellent songwriting. In his flicks, the characters’ psyches may be glimpsed through the lyrics of their songs. “Falling Slowly,” the Academy Award-winning love ballad, is a standout in this film.
“Guy” and “Girl” are an Irish busker and a Czech flower girl who meet and bond through their shared love of music. They record a series of love songs over the course of a week.
6. In Bruges (2008) – 7.9
It’s easy to forget that many of Hollywood’s most famous performers aren’t truly American. In Colin Farrell’s case, it’s true. In Martin McDonagh’s comedy crime picture In Bruges, Farrell plays hitman Ray, and he is amusing because he is able to dig into his Irish background and keep nothing back.
In Bruges is a great picture that manages to be both fun and heartfelt at the same time. While some might find its dark humor and use of swear words off-putting, it is a superb movie and often considered one of the best Irish dark comedy films. Brendan Gleeson, Ralph Fiennes, and Clémence Poésy round out the film’s impressive cast.
7. My Left Foot (1989) – 7.9
My Left Foot (1989)
My Left Foot was Daniel Day-Lewis’ first Oscar win, and it’s not hard to see why. To play Christy Brown, a real-life cerebral palsy artist and writer with just one foot, you have to be physically and psychologically demanding.
Day-Lewis had to learn not only how to manage his body, but also how to manipulate his speech patterns in order to play the character. Users lauded the actor for his ability to convey Brown’s rage and frustration in such a way that it revealed both the complexity of the character and his humanity.
8. Sing Street (2016) – 7.9
Sing Street, John Carney’s eighth feature film, is pure joy. It is a musical coming-of-age story about a young man in Dublin in the 1980s who forms a band to impress a girl.
The film’s songs, in addition to its stellar ensemble, are its strongest suit. In contrast to some musicals, Sing Street’s pop-rock tracks are easy to listen to and fun. To observe Conor’s musical development is also a lot of fun, as the protagonist struggles to discover his voice.
9. In The Name Of The Father (1993) – 8.1
In the Name of the Father has been nominated for seven Oscars, proving that Jim Sheridan is one of Ireland’s most critically praised directors. Additionally, he’s been nominated for five other Oscars during his career.
The film focuses on a guy whose father was condemned to life in jail for a crime he did not commit following the 1974 IRA bombing. Pete Postlethwaite, who was nominated for an Oscar for his portrayal as the father, is back for Day-Lewis in his second Oscar-nominated role.
10. Life Begins Now (2017) – 8.7
A little-known experimental drama about a romantic and spiritual connection between two people, Life Begins Now is a little-known experimental drama. Despite the lack of reviews, the film has received high marks for the quality of its acting and the way it causes the audience to pause and reflect on the purpose of life.
The film is a nice surprise for many people and one that you need to just sit and watch in order to experience its impact..