The All-Ireland Traditional Music Competition attracts the best musicians from all over the country -- and a few from beyond the shores of the Emerald Isle as well. As John Joe and his band prepare to capture the band trophy with their County Clare jigs and reels, Irishman Jimmy bends his Liverpudlians away from jazz toward the time-honored strains of Celtic music. As the musicians make their way towards the competition, trouble rears its head for both sets of challengers: the Liverpool Shamrock Ceilidh Band and the defending champions from Clare, and at the heart of this adversity lie the vengeful interventions of two estranged brothers, Jimmy and John Joe. Written by
Sujit R. Varma
Not much of a plot to this, most of my points are for the lovely Andrea Corr and the acting of the three brothers, Colm Meaney, Bernard Hill and Noel Bridgeman.
All plot lines are totally predictable if not contrived. The abandoning father, the bitter mother, the angry daughter. However, it is saved, and this is refreshing, by there being no mawkishness or melodrama.
Poor County Clare gets short shrift and never appears, Isle of Man and Northern Ireland stand in for it.
I don't know what the reasons for not filming it in today were. There are frequent references to the Beatles to remind us it is taking place in the sixties. But I know for a fact that a Clare man married five times in England and returning to County Clare in the sixties would have been met by the priest and run out of town on a rail as giving bad example to the young ones.
Also the single mother lying about her marital status (a widow), that was never clear, did she invent a man who died and a name for herself and her daughter? I don't like plot holes likes this. With such a simple storyline these should have been tightened up.
The ceili band and actors were badly out of synch in some of the scenes, feet tapping hopelessly out of rhythm. But that said all in all it was a pleasant little froth of a thing with lovely music.
7 out of 10.
6 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?