With St. Patrick’s Day fast approaching, it may be tempting to don your finest green attire and hit the nearest pub to celebrate. If you’d rather skip the hangover this year, though, we’ve got you covered. Get in the Irish spirit with the movies and TV series below, and celebrate from the comfort of your own couch — with or without a Guinness on the side.
1. The Commitments
Robert Atkins stars as Jimmy Rabbitte, a music fanatic who starts his own rag-tag soul band called “The Commitments” in the Northside of Dublin. From winning four BAFTA Awards after its release in 1991, The Commitments has gone on to obtain cult status and is widely considered to be one of the best Irish films ever made. If you’re itching for a musical dramedy perfect for St. Patrick’s Day, look no further.
2. Derry Girls
If you’ve been sleeping on this witty, raw, and very Irish sitcom, now is the perfect time to dive in. Stars Saoirse-Monica Jackson (Erin), Louisa Harland (Orla), Nicola Coughlan (Clare), Jamie-Lee O’Donnell (Michelle), and Dylan Llewellyn (James) are a force of irreverent charm as students navigating their teen years during the politically fraught period known is as The Troubles in 1990s Northern Ireland.
3. The Fall
Despite how terrifying it is, The Fall is one of those crime dramas that’s hard not to binge. Gillian Anderson (The X-Files) plays DS Stella Gibson, who heads to Belfast to track an elusive serial killer (Jamie Dornan, Fifty Shades trilogy). Like fellow crime series Luther, The Fall is worth the inevitable nightmares for its unpredictable plot and irresistibly complicated characters.
Set in Dublin’s criminal underworld, this series follows the violent rivalries surrounding kingpin John Boy (Aidan Gillen, Peaky Blinders) and his gang members. Referred to as an Irish The Wire (also starring Gillen) or The Sopranos, Love/Hate is worth bumping to the top of your crime drama binge list. You can also catch Preacher’s Ruth Negga as one half of a star-crossed duo whose chemistry sizzles through the screen.
5. My Left Foot
This biographical dramedy is nothing short of inspirational. Daniel Day-Lewis stars as Irish writer and painter Christy Brown, who was born with cerebral palsy so severe that he could only control his left foot. Day-Lewis and co-star Brenda Fricker both won Academy Awards for their performances, and you’ll also spot Killing Eve’s Fiona Shaw in the film as Christy’s carer, Dr. Eileen Cole.
6. Sing Street
Another musical dramedy to make the list, Sing Street is the coming-of-age story of Conor “Cosmo” Lawlor (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) who starts his own “futurist” band with classmates from his Christian Brothers school in inner-city Dublin. Also starring Aidan Gillen (Game of Thrones) as Conor’s father and Lucy Boynton (Bohemian Rhapsody) as his love interest, Sing Street has a heart of gold and a killer soundtrack.
7. Striking Out
Inspired by The Good Wife, this Irish legal drama follows the personal and professional lives of solicitors at a prestigious Dublin firm. Amy Huberman stars as the lead Tara Rafferty who, much like Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies), strikes out on her own after an affair upends the world as she knows. Hooked by the premise? You can start binging the first season over at Sundance Now.
8. Veronica Guerin
Cate Blanchett nabbed a Golden Globe Award nom for Best Actress in this crime drama, where she stars as Irish journalist Veronica Guerin, who was murdered in 1996 while investigating Dublin’s illegal drug trade. Directed by Joel Shumacher (The Lost Boys), this biopic follows Ireland’s drug war and how one brave crime reporter helped galvanize authorities into action.
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