Happy St. Paddy’s Day: Eight Great Movies Celebrating the Luck of the Irish 

Quaint villages, breathtaking scenery, loads of history and, oh my, those accents! There have been many incredible movies that were filmed in the breathtaking scenery of the Emerald Isle. Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by checking out these eight great movies that were filmed in Ireland. 

Waking Ned Devine (1998)

Ned Divine is a wonderful prize of a movie which you will surely love. When the reclusive Ned Divine wins the national lottery, he dies from the shock of it all. While he has no family to claim the ticket, his friends and the local townsfolk conspire to keep the prize winnings.

Wild Mountain Thyme (2020)

Rosemary Muldoon (Emily Blunt) and Anthony Reilly (Jamie Dornan) have lived on neighboring farms in County Westmeath for their entire lives. Despite being very attractive, they’re both unlucky in love. Rosemary begins to fall for Anthony, but he remains oblivious, until he’s driven into action when his father, Tony (Christopher Walken), threatens to sell the family farm to his nephew from New York (Jon Hamm).  

Leap Year (2010)

When Anna Brady’s (Amy Adams) boyfriend doesn’t propose after several years of dating, the real estate stager chooses to try her luck at an old Irish leap day tradition called bachelor’s day where, if you ask a man to marry you on February 29th, he must say yes! Anna heads to Ireland to find Mr. Right, but a series of travel mishaps takes her off course, and she finds herself having to rely on a grumpy innkeeper named Déclan (Matthew Goode) to drive her from the seaside village of Dingle to Dublin. 

Brooklyn (2015)

Another wonderful movie about Ireland is Brooklyn, a romantic historical drama set in the 1950s. Saoirse Ronan earned an Oscar nomination for this lovely period romance, based on the novel of the same name by Colm Tóibín. A young woman, Elilis Lacey (Saoirse Ronan) from a small town in southeast Ireland decides to move to Brooklyn in search of better opportunities. Although she is homesick, she meets and falls in love with a young man, Tony Fiorello (Emory Cohen) and envisions a life with him. Upon learning about her sister’s untimely death, she returns to Ireland and falls back into her life there. A choice must be made between the comfort of the life she has always known and a new life in the United States. 

The Secret of Roan Inish (1994)

The Secret of Roan Inish tells the story of a young girl who goes to live with her grandparents in a small Irish village. She learns that a distant ancestor of hers married a selkie, a seal that turns into a human when it ventures onto the land. She also discovers that her brother drifted out to sea and might still be out there, raised by selkies. The young girl seeks to uncover the mysteries of Roan Inish (“seal island”).  

Circle of Friends (1995)

Circle of Friends is about a group of friends in 1950s Ireland. It’s a coming of age story about three girls who come from a small Irish town. The film follows their lives as they become university students in Dublin, as well as their romances. Minnie Driver and Chris O’Donnell star in this movie which is based on the novel by Bestselling Irish Author Maeve Binchy. 

The Commitments (1991)

This is a musical comedy set in Dublin. It follows the story of a band called The Commitments and all the ups and downs these bandmates and friends go through. Unemployed North Dubliner Jimmy Rabbitte (Robert Arkins) assembles “the world’s hardest-working band,” composed entirely of young working class talent from their rough-and-tumble neighborhood. Much to their surprise, Band Leader Rabbitte decides the band will play 1960s soul music, and they find they just might have a shot at success. 

Angela’s Ashes (1999)

Angela’s Ashes is based on an autobiography by Irish American Author Frank McCourt. It mainly focuses on his childhood experiences and his family life in 1930s Limerick where his family is impoverished and his father battles both unemployment and alcoholism. Frankie’s mother, Angela, becomes stricken with loss and depression as The Great Depression hits Ireland hard. Emily Watson, Robert Carlyle and Ciaran Owens star in this moving film.


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