15 of The Best Irish Movies of All Time [2024]

Monday, April 15, 2024

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Ireland, a land rich in culture and history, has given the world a treasure trove of cinematic gems that resonate far beyond its shores.

In this exploration of the best Irish movies of all time, we delve into a diverse array of narratives that capture the essence of the Irish spirit.

From the gritty realism of urban dramas to the mystical allure of ancient folklore, each film offers a unique window into the heart of Ireland’s storytelling tradition.

These movies not only celebrate Irish identity but also address universal themes, making them beloved by audiences worldwide.

Join us as we journey through the rolling hills and bustling streets of Ireland, brought to life on the silver screen.


Best Irish Movies of All Time

Here are the 15 best Irish Movies of all time that you can binge-watch any day!

1. The Guard (2011)

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Genre: Comedy, Crime, Thriller

IMDb Ratings: 7.3/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video, Apple TV+.

An American FBI agent, played by Don Cheadle, partners with a brash Irish policeman to solve a murder and drug case in Ireland.

Their odd-couple dynamic, amid cultural clashes and humor, drives the investigation. Set in rural Ireland, the film “The Guard” combines a crime narrative with sharp wit and eccentric local characters.


2. Calvary (2014)

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Genre: Drama, Crime, Mystery

IMDb Ratings: 7.4/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video, Apple TV+, NOW TV, VUDU

In this pitch-dark comedy, an Irish priest played by Brendan Gleeson receives a death threat, and he has a week to figure out if it’s for real.

He spends the next seven days getting his affairs in order while visiting with parishioners who may be evocative of the seven deadly sins.


3. In Bruges (2008)

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Genre: Drama, Crime, Comedy

IMDb Ratings: 7.9/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video, Apple TV+, VUDU

In “In Bruges,” two Irish hitmen hide in the medieval Belgian city after a job goes wrong, grappling with guilt, existential dilemmas, and unexpected encounters in a darkly humorous and poignant tale of redemption and consequences.


4. Intermission (2003)

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Genre: Drama, Crime, Comedy

IMDb Ratings: 6.8/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video

“Intermission” is a 2003 Irish film featuring interconnected stories in Dublin, centered on a young man’s break-up that triggers a domino effect of events, involving a range of characters from a vengeful bank manager to a macho cop, blending dark humor with a gritty urban narrative.


5. The Wind that Shakes the Barley (2006)

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Genre: Drama, War

IMDb Ratings: 7.5/10

Where to Watch: Plex (Free), Prime Video, Sky Store. 

“The Wind That Shakes the Barley” portrays the Irish War of Independence and Civil War through the experiences of two brothers in the Irish Republican Army, exploring the harsh realities of war and the deep political and personal conflicts that arise during Ireland’s struggle for freedom.


6. My Left Foot (1989)

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Genre: Biography, Drama

IMDb Ratings: 7.8/10

Where to Watch: Pluto TV (Free), ITVX (Free), Apple TV+.

“My Left Foot” (1989) tells the true story of Christy Brown, an Irishman born with cerebral palsy. He overcomes his physical limitations to become an artist and writer using only his left foot, depicting his struggles and triumphs against immense odds.


7. Michael Collins (1996)

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Genre: Biography, Drama, Thriller, War

IMDb Ratings: 7.1/10

Where to Watch: Tubi (Free), Sky Store, Apple TV+, Prime Video (US & UK)

It is a biographical drama about the Irish revolutionary leader who led the national struggle for independence from British rule, focusing on his guerilla warfare tactics, political endeavors, and the complex path to the 1921 Anglo-Irish Treaty.


8. Barry Lyndon (1975)

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Genre: Adventure, Drama, War

IMDb Ratings: 8.1/10

Where to Watch: Apple TV+, Prime Video (UK), VUDU.

“Barry Lyndon” follows an Irish rogue who charms a wealthy widow, assuming her late husband’s aristocratic status in 18th-century England, a tale of ambition and deception set against the backdrop of European high society.


9. Brooklyn (2015)

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Genre: Drama, Romance

IMDb Ratings: 7.5/10

Where to Watch: Apple TV+, STARZ, Prime Video (US), VUDU.

It revolves around the story of a young Irish woman in the 1950s who emigrates to Brooklyn, New York, where she struggles with homesickness and the challenges of a new life while being torn between two countries and two loves.


10. Garage (2007)

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Genre: Drama

IMDb Ratings: 7.1/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video

“Garage” is a poignant Irish film about Josie, a gentle, lonely man working at a dilapidated rural gas station, whose simple life and search for companionship lead to unexpected and transformative relationships and a tragic conclusion.


11. The Quiet Girl/An Cailín Ciúin (2022)

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Genre: Drama

IMDb Ratings: 7.7/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video (US & UK), Sky Store, Apple TV+, Hulu.

“The Quiet Girl” is a tender Irish drama about a neglected and withdrawn young girl sent to live with her mother’s relatives for the summer, where she discovers a sense of belonging and the transformative power of love and kindness in rural 1980s Ireland.


12. The Secret of Kells (2009)

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Genre: Animation, Adventure, Family, Fantasy

IMDb Ratings: 7.5/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video (US), VUDU, ITVX, Apple TV+, Volta.

“The Secret of Kells” is an animated fantasy film about a young Irish monk, Brendan, who embarks on an adventurous quest to complete a magical, illuminated manuscript, amidst the backdrop of Viking invasions and ancient Celtic mythology.


13. The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2007)

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Genre: Drama, Horror, Mystery, Thriller

IMDb Ratings: 7/10

Where to Watch: Channel 4 (Free), Prime Video (US & UK), Netflix (US), Apple TV+, Sky Store.

“The Killing of a Sacred Deer” is a psychological thriller about a surgeon whose life unravels disastrously after he befriends a sinister teenage boy with a mysterious connection to his past, leading to a series of tragic and surreal events that challenge his family and moral choices.


14. In the Name of the Father (1993)

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Genre: Drama, Crime, Biography

IMDb Ratings: 8.1/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video (US & UK), Apple TV+, Sky Store, VUDU.

“In the Name of the Father” tells the true story of Gerry Conlon, a young Irishman wrongly convicted of a 1974 IRA bombing in London, and his father’s quest for justice, highlighting their struggle against wrongful imprisonment and the fight to clear their names.


15. The Magdalene Sisters (2002)

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Genre: Drama

IMDb Ratings: 7.7/10

Where to Watch: Prime Video (US), Apple TV+ (US), VUDU.

“The Magdalene Sisters” exposes the harrowing experiences of three young Irish women confined to the Magdalene Laundries in the 1960s, institutions run by the Catholic Church where they endure abuse and struggle for dignity and freedom.


Conclusion

The best Irish movies offer a captivating blend of storytelling, rich characters, and cultural depth, reflecting Ireland’s unique spirit.

They are not just Irish treasures but universal ones, leaving indelible marks on the hearts and minds of audiences worldwide.

So let’s dig into the movie marathon, and enjoy these best Irish movies of all times on your screen.

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