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


Brad Gann


Brad Gann
10 wins. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Angarano ... Cole McKay
Brendan Gleeson ... Desmond McKay
Tom Guiry ... Terry McKay
Melissa Leo ... Margaret McKay
Emily VanCamp ... Kathleen McKay
Michael Rispoli ... Joey
Francis Capra ... Anthony
Finn Curtin Finn Curtin ... Coach Mahoney
Scott Winters Scott Winters ... Doctor
Frank T. Wells Frank T. Wells ... Father Magruder
Wilson Better Wilson Better ... Graves
Bonnie Dennison ... Maria
Michael McCarthy Michael McCarthy ... Maria's Father
Joanna Herrington ... Maria's Mother
Kevin Chapman ... Officer Pierce


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


You can't choose family. See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language and brief violence

Did You Know?


Francis Capra played the son of Michael Rispoli on The short lived TV series My Guys (1996). See more »


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 »


Desmond McKay: How long we talking?
Doctor: It's hard to say. Have you put your affairs in order?
Desmond McKay: My affairs?
Desmond McKay: Oh sure, doc, sure. Taxes all paid up, college fund all set up for all the kids. Margaret, she's a beneficiary on a huge insurance policy I've been contributing to since day one. Everything's squared away.
Doctor: You given any consideration to quitting drinking?
Desmond McKay: Why? So when I'm putting my affairs in order I can see how fucked up they are?
See more »


References The Brady Bunch (1969) See more »


Riding Gloves
By Jesse de Natale
See more »

User Reviews

In case you missed *the* under-rated flick of the year...
2 February 2008 | by victor_papSee all my reviews

This is a spectacularly well-paced and original drama with some incredible acting on both Angarano's and Guiry's parts. Some interesting cinematic techniques from time to time enhance the remarkable story-telling in this dark coming of age story. The bits of humor also help pull you in to a surprisingly authentic South Boston scenario. With a terrific and spirited cameo by Kevin O'Donnell, alongside a refreshing cast, the characters really outshine the stereotypes right down to the shrimp-stealing busboy. Great sets, a solid and occasionally edgy soundtrack, but what's most impressive is the strong story, which rescues you from the brink of a cliché' time and again. I happened to rent this just on word-of-mouth and can't stop reflecting on some of those haunting scenes. Think of this as a gritty Good Will Hunting with a lot more 'street cred'...and heart.

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Official Sites:

Official site





Release Date:

28 March 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Black Irish See more »

Filming Locations:

Boston, Massachusetts, USA See more »


Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,900, 28 October 2007

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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