Down 25,543 this week

Poitín (1978)

 |  Drama  |  November 1978 (UK)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.2/10 from 89 users  
Reviews: 5 user

A poteen maker attempts to avoid the attentions of the Gardai in Connemara



0Check in

IMDb Picks: May

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in May, sponsored by COVERGIRL.

Visit the IMDb Picks section

Related News

Mick Lally obituary
| The Guardian - TV News

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 2748 titles
created 13 Aug 2011
a list of 42 titles
created 07 Jun 2013
a list of 3 titles
created 9 months ago
a list of 42 titles
created 3 months ago

Related Items

Search for "Poitín" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Poitín (1978)

Poitín (1978) on IMDb 7.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Poitín.


Credited cast:
Maighréad Ní Chonghaile ...
Tom Sailí Ó Flaithearta ...
Marcus (as Tomás Ó Flatharta)
Macdara Ó Fatharta ...
Mick Lally ...
Garda sergeant (as Micheál Ó Maolallaí)
Seán Ó Coisdealbha ...
Tomás MacEoin ...
Bairbre Uí Dhonncha ...
Colm Bairéad ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Johnny Choil Mhaidhc


A poteen maker attempts to avoid the attentions of the Gardai in Connemara

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

November 1978 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Poteen  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film caused a bit of controversy when released. Some people on the west coast of Ireland were appalled at how their lifestyle was displayed as backward, simple-minded and down right rough in appearance. One scene of the film that was the focus of much of the controversy was the 'spud fight' or 'Troid Pratai' scene, which seemed to set in stone negative stereotype that was held on the people of Ireland, but no more so on the west of the country where the film itself was set. See more »


Featured in Irish Cinema: Ourselves Alone? (1995) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Gritty look at the Gaeltacht
15 July 2002 | by (Minnesooooooooota) – See all my reviews

I recently attended an Irish language conference that played Poitín as the basis of the advanced (for us) class. While we didn't play the film all the way through -- in fact, stopping often to review the dialogue as exercises -- the movie held up very well indeed.

Often, Ireland is used as a setting for fanciful stories involving comely lasses, hard-drinking but dear old men, and luscious scenery. The greatest example of this is probably The Quiet Man, which I adore, but there are many others and not all of American origin. Poitín, however, involves none of this, except for the hard drinking of the Irish moonshine called poitín (pronounced POH-teen, more or less). The film portrays an pre-Celtic Tiger Ireland that certainly looks more authentic than Finian's Rainbow, etc.

Micil, an old moonshiner, lives with his adult daughter on a hardscrabble farm mostly raising sheep but also producing a bountiful crop of poitín. He uses two shifty characters, fiery Labhcas and his dull-witted partner Sleahmnán, as agents or distributors to the local populace. The police are well aware of his activities but haven't caught him yet. Things go awry when a batch of the product is confiscated by the Gardaí then stolen back by the two agents, who decide to double-cross Micil.

There are no truly sympathetic characters in the movie with the exception of the publican, whose legitimate business is undermined by Labhcas and Sleamhnán. Everything is bleak -- the characters, the landscape, the weather, even the cinematography, which looks washed out, giving the film an older, sad feeling. Even the complete lack of a musical score contributes to the bleak mood. The acting is almost uniformly excellent -- Niall Toibin as Labhcas and Cyril Cusack as Micil, especially, both of whom appear on 'Ballykissangel' now. Mick Lally has a smaller role as a Garda sargeant, and he has appeared in films like Circle of Friends and The Secret of Roan Inish, as well as 'Ballykissangel', too.

In short, for its budget and production choices, an amazing film, and it's also amazing how many Irish speakers they used (in 1979!) and how many of them were solid actors. It seems like the Irish-language theatre is a great and mostly untapped resource. If you can get your hands on a copy with subtitles, a definite recommendation for film enthusiasts.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Poitín (1978) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: