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Black Irish (2007)

R  |   |  Drama  |  20 April 2007 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 2,229 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 15 critic

A teenage boy longs to win the attention of his emotionally distant father.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
...
...
...
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Joey
...
Anthony
Finn Curtin ...
Coach Mahoney
Scott Winters ...
Doctor
Frank T. Wells ...
Father Magruder
...
Graves
...
Maria
Michael McCarthy ...
Maria's Father
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Maria's Mother
...
Officer Pierce
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Storyline

In South Boston, where Irish roots run deep and Catholic tradition reigns, two brothers face similar hardships but lead far different lives. While older brother Terry descends into drugs and crime, 16-year-old Cole vies to make the state baseball championships - but must struggle to withstand his brother's destructive influence. When the two inevitably clash in a life-and-death confrontation, family ties-and futures-are at stake. Written by Echo Bridge Home Entertainment

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

You can't choose family. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language and brief violence
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 April 2007 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Czarna lukrecja  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$6,900 (USA) (26 October 2007)

Gross:

$6,900 (USA) (26 October 2007)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

During the scene in the McKay's living room where the Father is comparing life to baseball while watching the game, the first shots of the game are the Red Sox playing at Yankee Stadium, while the later shots in the conversation show the Red Sox paying home at Fenway Park. See more »

Quotes

Desmond McKay: [home from his date] That was quick. You should have chewed your food slower.
Cole McKay: It didn't go too well.
Desmond McKay: Didn't get any, huh?
Cole McKay: No... I killed her bird.
Desmond McKay: That's a new expression on me. That's not exactly a good thing, is it?
Cole McKay: No dad, I literally killed her bird.
See more »

Connections

References The Brady Bunch (1969) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Disintegration of a Family
13 January 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

BLACK IRISH is one of those little Independent films that manage to give more to the audience than the extreme constrictions of time and budget would suggest. Writer/director Brad Gunn (his first film) manages to tell a story about an Irish family from South Boston that is sincere, realistic, poignant, and profound, and though he worked with a small budget and a shooting schedule of 22 days, he has produced a fine little gem of a film.

The McKay family has problems: father Desmond (Brendan Glesson) lacks work and spends most of his time drinking beer and watching baseball on TV, having been a promising baseball player as a youngster but nipped by the Vietnam War into glum lethargy; mother Margaret (Melissa Leo) resents the shadow of the man she married and works as a social worker to support her family; daughter Kathleen (Emily VanKamp) is pregnant, unwed, and when denied the choice of abortion by her mother's strong Catholicism is determined to have the child by herself, giving it the loving home she feels she has been denied; son Terry (Tom Guiry) is a tortured delinquent who is a gang member and always in conflict with the law; and youngest son Cole (the excellent young 20-year-old Michael Angarano of 'One Last Thing', 'Man in the Chair', 'Snow Angels', 'Lords of Dogtown', 'Seabiscuit', etc) is conflicted by wanting to be a priest versus wanting to be a professional baseball player - he is the good kid and the last hope of his parents.

Terry tricks Cole into accompanying a house break-in and the trouble begins. The financial crisis at home drives Cole to get a job in a restaurant, and drives Desmond to menial work shining shoes. The family will support Kathleen's pregnancy, but that strips the income to the point that Cole must leave his Catholic school to be in public school, and while that seems to dash his hopes for a career in baseball, the coach at his public school (Finn Curtin) acknowledges Cole's talent and promises a future. Terry's lifestyle as a hoodlum presents increasing problems and at one point Cole gathers the courage to confront Terry during a robbery plot at Cole's work place and Terry is seriously wounded. We discover a hidden fact about Desmond that explains some of his sociopath behavior to his family and it is this discovery, coinciding with Terry's gunshot injury and Kathleen's tough life as an unwed working pregnant girl, that pulls the family unit back together.

If the plot sound like soap opera rest assured it is not. This is an intensely realistic examination of a fragile Irish Catholic family striving to makes sense of a world that is increasingly chaotic. All of the actors are excellent, but the extraordinary sensitivity and skill of young Michael Angarano make this a film to cherish. And Brad Gann is assuredly a talent to watch! Very highly recommended. Grady Harp


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