Get your green beer ready, it’s St. Patrick’s Day weekend.
If you’re staying in rather than braving the pub crowds, it’s a great time to celebrate the best TV and movies about the Emerald Isle. We’ve picked out five Irish and Irish-themed films and TV shows in honor of the holiday. BYO shamrock shake.
If you want a thriller: The Fall
Forget Christian Grey. Jamie Dornan puts in his best work as serial killer Paul Spector on this Northern Ireland-set crime series, alongside the always-wonderful Gillian Anderson as the cop hunting him down. Compared to the rest of our recommendations this week, The Fall is on the dark side, but it’s an engaging show that will keep you watching all weekend long.
Stream The Fall on Netflix.
If you like your action a little weird: In Bruges
Despite being set in a Belgian city, In Bruges is an Irish film. Written and directed by acclaimed playwright Martin McDonagh, born in London to Irish parents,, the film stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson as Irish hitmen awaiting orders in Bruges after a job gone wrong. The movie is definitely weird (McDonagh is a quirky writer), but the action is aces and the script is hilarious.
If you like a quiet, moving romance: Brooklyn
We don’t have enough good things to say about this 2015 film, which was nominated for best picture, best adapted screenplay and best actress at last year’s Oscars. Saoirse Ronan stars in the film as an Irish immigrant living in Brooklyn in the 1950s, torn between the life she leads in America and the life she could lead back home in Ireland. The film is lovely, genuine and features superb acting from Ronan and co-stars Domhnall Gleeson and Emory Cohen.
If you love musicals: Once
Like Brooklyn, Once is a charming and intimate romance. Unlike the latter, it is also an excellent musical. The 2007 film from director John Carney (who also gave the world the delightful musical Sing Street last year) follows an Irish musician and a Czech immigrant as they record music together and fall in love over the course of a week in Dublin. The movie was adapted into a Broadway show that won the Tony for best musical in 2012.
If you want something epic: Far and Away
Back in the ye old days of 1992, Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman were a married couple starring in a sweeping Ron Howard period piece. Baggage aside, Far and Away is a fun adventure film celebrating the American dream through the lens of Irish immigrants in the 19th century. The costumes, the romance and the drama make the movie.
You can scroll through more of our binge recommendations below.
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