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Best of 2017: Irish Films



Páraic takes a look back over some of the Irish films which made an impact in 2017 and ranks them 1-10, with Emer Reynolds The Farthest coming out on top as’s Irish Film of the Year.

1) The Farthest

Emer Reynolds takes us on a powerful journey in space with this mind blowing documentary that examines our place in the Universe.


2) Song of Granite

Pat Collins has surpassed himself with this beautiful look at the life of seannós singer Joe Heaney. It starts with Joe as a young boy coming to terms with his musical gift and weaves a story from his travels to England and America. It tries to examine the source of inspiration for an artist and what is sacrificed along the way. Certainly a warts and all biography which makes it all the richer. You haven’t nor will you see the likes of this film for many years to come.


3) Bad Day for the Cut

The people behind this mightn’t consider it an Irish film, perhaps Northern Irish? Anyway Chris Baugh et. al. have offered up a razor sharp revenge film that holds no punches in the violence or dark northern sense of humour. We were lucky enough to see it at the Galway Film Fleadh and will keep you posted of any release dates.

Original Review here


4) Micheal Inside

“While the film shares a universe with the likes of Cardboard Gangsters and ‘Love/Hate’, it’s worlds apart in tone. This is a socially conscious film which takes a realism approach to exploring the crippling problems of the society that exists on the fringes of the drug trade in Ireland. ”

Original Review here


5) Cardboard Gangsters

“O’Connor continues to be one of the country’s most under-rated film-makers, quietly going about his work depicting stories of struggle and unrest in Dublin.”

Original Review here


6) Handsome Devil

John Butler is back with a much more balanced and enjoyable feature than his 2013 film The Stag. Fionn O’Shea plays Ned Roche a weedy punk rocker who is transferred to a rugby heavy boarding school. An unlikely friendship is sparked with Conor played by Nicholas Galitizine but will society let the friendship flourish or is destined for the sin bin? Moe Dunford is great as always and Andrew Scott shouldn’t have watched Dead Poets Society before shooting the film.


7) Pilgrimage

Tom Holland a.k.a. Spiderman speaking Irish? Not really but he gives it a good enough stab. Brendan Muldowney tells a bloody tale about a group of monks who escort an Irish relic across the Irish landscape in an effort to get if back to Rome. Jon Bernthal is cast as the mute who is like the Yakuza character in the white suit in that Simpsons episode. The violence as with most of Muldowney’s work is what sticks out and perhaps it might get a best foreign film nod at next years Oscars.


8) Maze

The performances are great from Tom Vaughan-Lawlor and Barry Ward but unfortunately it’s the story that lets the film down. The fabricated elements of this real life escape work against the film. Resulting in a watered down, bland outing.


9) The Drummer and the Keeper

“The film deserves to find an audience and gets a huge thumbs up for the two leads as Murphy and McCarthy are superb – prep those IFTAs now.”

Original review here.


10) George Best: All By himself

A sad look at the ravages of alcoholism on an amazing talent.