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Frommer's Ireland 2004
by Suzanne RowanKelleher
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Paperback (12 January, 2004)
list price: $19.99
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Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars Best of Travelguides
My family used Frommer's Ireland 12th Ed. extensively before, during ,and after our trip to Ireland in July of 2002. The first two chapters Best of..., and Planning your Trip... were worth the purchase price alone. All of the Best of tips we followed were excellent choices.
The large fold out map that was included served very well during our driving tour of Ireland. Using the county and town maps that were included in the local sections kept us right on track. Distances are deceptive however. It takes longer to get anywhere you go than it would appear from reading the map. The Irish road system is not built for speed ( nor comfort for that matter) so plan accordingly. It takes a long time to drive across the country, or from county to county. More could have been made of this issue in the guide. Our biggest mistake was trying to do too much.
The up to date information on Dublin was very helpful, as were the frequent tips throughout the guide on ways to avoid the summer crowds. I used the web addresses that were included for lodging and found themvery helpful for checking availability and booking our rooms quickly. Don't go without it!

5-0 out of 5 stars Frommer's Ireland, 12th ed.
My wife and I traveled around Ireland for two weeks this summer, and Frommer's Ireland was an amazingly helpful tool.

Realizing this would probably be the last time we'd be traveling abroad for a while, we decided to mix it up a bit --"inexpensive" to "moderate" accommodations and restaurants in most places, with a few dabbles in the "expensive" (and even one "very expensive") splurges along the way. Across the board, the recommendations in this book were outstanding. What to see and do, where to stay, where to eat and shop.....all were presentedin a very down-to-Earth way. The eye for small detail and nuances throughout the book made us feel we were getting advice from a local expert who REALLY knows her stuff.

I can't say enough about how helpful this guide was to us -- it really made our trip a memorable one. The fold-out map got us around most of the country with no trouble....once a nice gentleman in a petrol station showed me how to get my rental car into reverse.

All in all, a terrific book.

4-0 out of 5 stars Hurray for Frommer's!!
I planned a trip to Ireland for my Mother, 4 sisters and Myself.
I started with "Ireland for Dummies" then read "Frommer's Ireland 2001" and crossed referenced with "Ireland from $60 a Day".I learned more from these books in 2 weeks than in all of my years as a Travel Agent and Airline staff!!Their detailed in-sight and straight-forward advice was right on target. They give prices,times, phones numbers and payment information. They tell you where to go, what to do and who to talk to. I loved their list of on-line addressess for information.Only two things were wrong with my copy.They quoted every price in Irish pounds that were useless after February 2002. I realize that they had to go to print before this change and were unable to adapt in time.The other was lack of detailed mapping.A free map was included inside "Ireland 2001" but only had some of the streets shown for Dublin. I know these will be corrected in future printings.I would recommend these Frommer's books to anyone!!They are written in plain English, yet don't talk down to you(even the "Dummies" book. It was quite humorous) ... Read more

Isbn: 0764542168
Sales Rank: 258391
Subjects:  1. Europe - Great Britain - General    2. Europe - Ireland    3. Guidebooks    4. Ireland    5. Travel    6. Travel - Foreign    7. Travel Guides    8. Travel & holiday guides    9. Travel / Europe / Great Britain   

Frommer's Ireland from $80 a Day
by Suzanne RowanKelleher
Paperback (22 March, 2004)
list price: $18.99 -- our price: $13.29
(price subject to change: see help)
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Isbn: 0764542176
Sales Rank: 29645
Subjects:  1. Europe - Great Britain - General    2. Europe - Ireland    3. Guidebooks    4. Ireland    5. Travel    6. Travel - Foreign    7. Travel Guides    8. Northern Ireland    9. Travel & holiday guides    10. Travel / Europe / Ireland   


Portrait of Ireland: Landscapes, Treasures, Traditions (Dorling Kindersley Travel Guides)
by Lisa Gerard-Sharp Lisa Gerard-Sharp Dk Travel Writers DK Travel Writers
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Hardcover (01 August, 2000)
list price: $29.95
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Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars *Almost* All you Need!
I received this book as a gift from a dear friend who knows just how much I love Ireland.She was right on the mark with "Eyewitness Travel Portrait of Ireland".This book has it all!

It starts out with basic info; finding Ireland on a map, it's history, landscape, wildlife and people.It then moves on to a region by region review of places to visit and the towns/sights to be seen.The book has a ton of information as well as beautiful photographs to give you a feeling of what you'd see.I especially liked that the hardback book I have is bigger and easier to view than it's soft cover counter part.I've seen the smaller version and, even though the information is the same, you lose a lot in trying to see those teeny, tiny pictures.Go for the big one if you have the room!There's not much difference between them in price.

If you plan on going to Ireland I can only suggest you suppliment this book with a guide like Frommer's that give you places to eat and stay as well as all the prices."Travel Portrait" lists which places have fees but not exact amounts.It also lists which towns have market days, which sights require fees and offer tours, which ones are handicap accessible and what the open and close dates are for most places.

I love this book and you will, too.It is well worth owning!

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book / Great Gift
Essentially a travel guide in a large format, this book makes an exceptional gift for anyone with a hint of Irish blood or an interest in the Emerald Isle. Beautiful images are married to very readable text and interesting sidebars and facts. Printed on glossy, coffee-table-book paper, the pictures really jump out, grab you, and drag into the incredible scenery and history of one of the most spellbinding islands on earth.

5-0 out of 5 stars Portrait of Ireland
In Dorling Kindersley's unique and highly readable style, Protrait of Ireland takes the reader to Ireland through photgraphs and interesting facts. Perfect for all ages, Portrait of Ireland offers snippets ofinformation enabling even the smallest attention span to glean valuableinformation about Ireland. ... Read more

Isbn: 078946361X
Sales Rank: 437370
Subjects:  1. Europe - Ireland    2. Guidebooks    3. Ireland    4. Northern Ireland    5. Pictorials    6. Travel    7. Travel - Foreign   

McCarthy's Bar: A Journey of Discovery in the West of Ireland
by Pete McCarthy
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Hardcover (01 February, 2001)
list price: $24.95
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Editorial Review

Although Pete McCarthy was raised in England, his mother hails from West Cork, and, despite never having lived there, he can't shake the strange feeling that Ireland is more home than home. A return pilgrimage reveals immediately why he (or anyone, for that matter) feels "involved and engaged" in Ireland. On arriving at the airport in Cork he's greeted by a guy in a giant rubber Celtic cross getup who's telling jokes with a latter-day St. Patrick (the guy who cast all snakes and pagans out of Ireland). Later, when McCarthy happens to mention that his surname matches that of the pub he's in (ever faithful to his Eighth Rule of Travel: "Never Pass a Bar That Has Your Name on It"), the owner buys him a Guinness, invites him to her raucous all-night birthday party, then insists he move to Ireland because, well, obviously he belongs. McCarthy's Second Rule of Travel states: "The More Bright Primary Colours and Ancient Celtic Symbols Outside the Pub, the More Phoney the Interior." While the island is turning into a haven for upmarket tourists--and McCarthy offers outstanding examples of bumbleheaded tourists in action--he still finds plenty of pubs where you can buy a bicycle and which still exist primarily as venues for conversation and Irish music sessions.

While most travel writers seek out opportunities to meet the famous--or the infamous--McCarthy has the charming knack of just bumping into them on his rambles, which is how he met Noel Redding, formerly of Jimi Hendrix's band, and the author Frank McCourt. Far more interesting, though, are the eccentric and talkative bachelors and landladies who turn up in pubs, B&Bs, and the middle of the road. McCarthy has mastered the art of getting creatively lost, wandering the back lanes of Ireland where the hype of tourism has yet to arrive, pursuing stone circles, impossibly romantic ruined abbeys, and, of course, pubs. What he discovers is that "In Ireland, the unexpected happens more than you expect," which makes for a hilarious tour through one of the most beautiful, friendly, and quirky places on earth with a comedian who has honed the art of telling a good story and of having fun. --Lesley Reed ... Read more

Reviews (45)

5-0 out of 5 stars Rest in Peace, Mr. McCarthy!
We were living in Scotland when we both read this book. We had been to the re-enactment of the Battle of Ballinamuck in County Longford in 1998 a year before or so. It was where my husband's Grandfather came from and left in 1914. Immediately after reading it, he wanted to go back. Pete McCarthy captures it all too well, especially the genetic memory. One other reviewer stated that Americans go there to get cheap real estate.
I suggest you try it and see that there is NO cheap property going for sale in Ireland anymore!
Pete McCarthy did not use a computer to write. Everything was hand written or typed first before he handed it over to someone. Perhaps that is why we got so little from him in. Also read his other book, The Road to McCarthy. Brilliant, as well. McCarthy's Bar, however, will be the one that we will read for a third time. His passing is a great loss to Britain and Ireland.

4-0 out of 5 stars Not a book for the uptight reader
This is an easy hilarious trip by someone who sees life as a joy. Some of the negative reviews are possibly by people who are ultra PC. You know the sort -stiff upper lip or whacko religious types who believe God is watching everything they do! If you have no sense of irony or picking up on the foibles of stereotypes, then go and read the bible, or if you want your travelogue sanitized, go read Bryson.

4-0 out of 5 stars pretty accurate
I've read the other reviews - they are mostly very good. I can see why - there are a lot of laughs in this book and it is accurate. After a while, you get a bit used to a routine in his humorous style, but he reflects the Eire I visit - a friendly people with great imagination and style in talking, and where odd things really do happen and are accepted as normal; also a country in a time of great change (you'll see I'm from the sad and grey little country of Northern Ireland - it'srelief to visit this happier place). ... Read more

Isbn: 0312272103
Subjects:  1. (Peter Charles McCarthy Robins    2. (Peter Charles McCarthy Robinson)    3. Atlantic Coast (Ireland)    4. Description And Travel    5. Essays & Travelogues    6. Europe - Ireland    7. Ireland    8. Ireland - History    9. McCarthy, Pete    10. Social life and customs    11. Travel    12. Travel - Foreign    13. Journeys   

At the Point: Live
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (30 October, 2001)
list price: $20.99
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  • Import
  • Live
Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Christy At His Best
This is, hands down, my favorite of Christy Moore's albums.The audience helps to bring out the best of Christy and vice versa.There is a great mix of music on this album.There are traditional pieces like "Black is the Colour" and "Cliffs of Dooneen", Christy's own hilarious "Delirium Tremens", "Knock" and "Joxer Goes to Stuttgart", his own rendition of "Fairytale of New York" which breathes new life into the old Pogues' song and two of Christy's most famous hits "Nancy Spain" and "Ride On".Yet that is just half of the album!This is a 'must have' for any Christy fan.You'll enjoy the songs and stories with their Irish references and colloquialisms whether you are from Ireland, been exposed to the culture or are just getting acquainted.

5-0 out of 5 stars excellent cd
christy live at the point...excellent music ... Read more

Asin: B00005LVX3
Sales Rank: 95801
Subjects:  1. Celtic/Irish    2. Int'l & World Music    3. Pop   

An Irish Evening: Live At The Grand Opera House, Belfast
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (28 January, 1992)
list price: $13.98 -- our price: $13.98
(price subject to change: see help)
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Editorial Review

During the early '90s, the Chieftains embarked upon a series of multigenre crossover recordings. Major pop stars were brought in as guest artists and a few had the goods, but others came across as wannabes or well-meaning if clueless PR victims. This Grammy-winning live album from 1992 features the Who's Roger Daltrey and American singer Nanci Griffith. Sadly, Griffith's husky, thin-textured voice is inadequate to the demands of Irish vocal ornamentation and phrasing. Daltrey, meanwhile, sounds raucous, unidiomatic, and amateurish; plus his presence with a traditional Irish music ensemble in the middle of British-occupied Belfast seems a bit much. In any case, courting comparison with the Chieftains' own singer, Kevin Conneff, is a risky business at best. The instrumentals are typically accomplished and future Riverdance diva Jean Butler provides charmingly percussive footwork, but the trap drummer on the last tune is glaringly out of place. --Christina Roden ... Read more


  • Live
Reviews (10)

4-0 out of 5 stars A fine "Evening," but maybe Roger could have stayed home
Representative of the fine mix of traditional Irish music the Chieftains perform, this concert gives the fan of the Chieftains a nice sampling of what they're good at with the occasional error in judgement that accompanies a live performance.
Highlights include a fine opening medley that gives the band a chance to show how well they play together , Matt Malloy'soutstanding flute solo on "The Mason's Apron," that still stuns me every time I listen to it, and a closing medley that allows each member to shine.
But the guest stars don't really work for me, Nanci Griffith doesn't do a bad job but adds nothing special to the concert and Roger Daltrey sounds out of his element on "Raglan Road," and while "Behind Blue Eyes" is interesting as worked through the Chieftains sound it just doesn't fit here. I am sure "The Stone" (A special Dance when two lovers meet) is fine when you can see it, it loses a bit on CD. But these are not major problems and the sound is solid for a concert performance. For this fan, it's a pretty good time.

3-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Chieftains, but with some not-so-good extras.
This CD is a recording of the Chieftains playing live in Belfast. As a result, there is some distracting background noise and in my opinion the clapping and cheering detracts from the overall effect of the CD.

This aside, the CD contains an excellent compilation of vocal ballads and lovely instrumentals. Kevin Conneff does a lovely a cappella rendering of "North Americay." Other standouts include the rollicking "Lilly Bolero/The White Cockade," and the mournful "The Stone."

Nanci Griffiths and Roger Daltrey appear as guests of the Chieftains in several of the tunes on the CD. I enjoyed Nanci Griffiths "Little Love Affairs," and "Red is the Rose." However, I cannot say the same for Roger Daltrey. I skip over his "Raglan Road" and "Behind Blue Eyes," every time I play the CD. I feel that his songs don't fit into the style of the CD, and frankly, I dislike his voice.

Overall, I listen to this CD for its lovely Chieftains pieces, and try to block out its failings.

5-0 out of 5 stars If ICould Give This Six Stars I Would
I don't know what the reviewer's problem is, but nobody in the Opera House this night was thinking about the British occupation, they were all too busy enjoying one of the best Chieftains live shows ever! Only Paddy and the Boys can meld rock, pop, country-folk, the dance and traditional Celtic music into one fantastic show like this. Daltrey's pub drinking style is PERFECT for the band, and the version of "Raglan Road" contained here is one of the best ever recorded. Nanci Griffith sounds like she could've been born in County Mayo. I would urge anyone to get a copy of this immediately, there's none better! A topnotch addition to any longtime fan's Cheiftains' CD collection or a good starter for those of you just beginning to get a taste for this worldclass Irish band's music. Long before Riverdance there was the CHIEFTAINS! ... Read more

Asin: B000003F7B
Subjects:  1. British Folk    2. Celtic Folk    3. Celtic/Irish    4. Contemporary Celtic    5. Int'l & World Music    6. Ireland    7. Irish Folk    8. Pop    9. Traditional Celtic    10. Traditional Irish Folk   


Celtic Moods [Virgin]
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (11 November, 1997)
list price: $17.98 -- our price: $13.99
(price subject to change: see help)
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Reviews (15)

3-0 out of 5 stars Another Perspective
I have to hand it to the people who compile these CD's for keeping this one real.It is an unfortunate thing that "Celtic" culture has become associated with the New Age movement. Unfortunate because so often what is referred to as Celtic sometimes is so in name only, not to mention the fact that I can't tell people about my passion for it without getting some who roll their eyes. I am pleased to say though that aside from the packaging this is a collection that passes muster as it contains artists who are no less than the genuine article.Granted, Loreena McKennit is Canadian, but she has proven a strong dedication to the genre and when coupled with the likes of Paul Brady, well, let's just say his is a tide which lifts all boats. I recommend this along with any of the Celtic Twilight series as good introductions to this style of music.

4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent compilation!
I have both this CD and the first Pure Moods disc and enjoy them both very much. Celtic Moods has a lovely blend of vocals and instrumental tunes. People who are new to Celtic music will probably enjoy it very much. If you've been a Celtic fan for a while though, this CD may not appeal to your seasoned tastes.

Also recommended: Loreena McKennitt, Clannad, Great Big Sea, Cherish the Ladies

5-0 out of 5 stars An Execellent Compilation of Celtic music
This is a very good cd.It is perfect for someone who has alot of interest in celtic music but not to much This cd has the right amount of celtic music without over doing it
I own this cd and love it ... Read more

Asin: B000000WF2
Sales Rank: 41073
Subjects:  1. Adult Alternative    2. Adult Alternative Pop/Rock    3. Celtic Folk    4. Celtic Fusion    5. Celtic New Age    6. Celtic Pop    7. Celtic Rock    8. Celtic/Irish    9. Contemporary Celtic    10. Int'l & World Music    11. Ireland    12. Pop    13. Singer/Songwriter    14. Traditional Celtic   


The Quiet Man (Collector's Edition)
Director: John Ford
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
DVD (22 October, 2002)
list price: $14.98 -- our price: $11.24
(price subject to change: see help)
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Editorial Review

Blarney and bliss, mixed in equal proportions. John Wayne plays an American boxer who returns to the Emerald Isle, his native land. What he finds there is a fiery prospective spouse (Maureen O'Hara) and a country greener than any Ireland seen before or since--it's no surprise The Quiet Man won an Oscar for cinematography. It also won an Oscar for John Ford's direction, his fourth such award. The film was a deeply personal project for Ford (whose birth name was Sean Aloysius O'Fearna), and he lavished all of his affection for the Irish landscape and Irish people on this film. He also stages perhaps the greatest donnybrook in the history of movies, an epic fistfight between Wayne and the truculent Victor McLaglen--that's Ford's brother, Francis, as the elderly man on his deathbed who miraculously revives when he hears word of the dustup. Barry Fitzgerald, the original Irish elf, gets the movie's biggest laugh when he walks into the newlyweds' bedroom the morning after their wedding, and spots a broken bed. The look on his face says everything. The Quiet Man isn't the real Ireland, but as a delicious never-never land of Ford's imagination, it will do very nicely. --Robert Horton ... Read more


  • Color
  • Closed-captioned
Reviews (160)

1-0 out of 5 stars Poor and cheap digital transfer
I am not rating the movie, which is good, but be aware that the digital transfer and the color are a disgrace. It is very difficult to follow the interior scenes. Stay away of this issue.

5-0 out of 5 stars Picture Trade: 4 Sisters and the Movies They Grew Up Loving
Sister #1: I never saw TQM in color until I was 20, as our parents didn't get a color set until Nixon resigned in 1974.But I loved it every time I saw it on our little b&w tv set and love it even more now in color.To me it is the most romantic movie ever, with gorgeous color, wonderful Irish scenery and a great stable of John Ford's Irish players made the movie very special.John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara were in their prime and never looked more beautiful together.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Real Treat
I never thought I'd take John Wayne seriously as a romantic lead, but I did here.This is Duke's finest cinematic hour!I loved the script and the first-rate cast!The Quiet Man is a movie I'll watch again and again!Even with its flaws re the DVD version, it's still a treat beyond compare. ... Read more

Asin: B00006JMRD
Subjects:  1. Feature Film-comedy   


In the Name of the Father
Director: Jim Sheridan
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
DVD (02 September, 2003)
list price: $14.98 -- our price: $13.48
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Editorial Review

Based on a true story, this rousing and tough-minded film details British overzealousness in prosecuting an IRA bombing in the 1970s. Grabbing up a pair of small-time thieves (Daniel Day-Lewis and John Lynch) and their families, the government concocts a conspiracy case against them and tosses them all in jail. Until then, Day-Lewis has been a ne'er-do-well, an apolitical goof looking for a quick score. But confronted with the toughness of his own father (Pete Postlethwaite) in the face of British torture, he begins to realize just what the stakes are. In the Name of the Father is at timesgrueling and never less than compelling, with a complex performance by Day-Lewis and a strong one by Emma Thompson, as the lawyer who finally cracks through the British obstructions to the truth. --Marshall Fine ... Read more


  • Color
  • Closed-captioned
  • Dolby
  • Widescreen
Reviews (50)

During a spate of IRA-triggered bombings in the early 1970s in the UK, the beleaguered British government created a haphazard "Prevention of Terrorism Act" which allowed the arrest of any individual on the flimsiest of suspicions.

When explosions rocked two pubs in Guildford (London?) a group of four Irish junkies -- Gerry Conlon (Daniel Day Lewis) and three others -- were wrongfully arrested in what we are led to believe was a miscarriage of justice.

The movie is based on Gerry's memoirs, so it cannot be passed off as impeccably "factual" but if some memories have been bent into formulaic shape for entertainment purposes, the truth still remains: these people were not murdering masterminds.

There are really two stories working in the film:

(1) The steamrolling of the "Guildford Four" by the British government; and
(2) The atavistic relationship between Gerry and his father Guiseppe while the two were in prison

Each of these stories would have made a taut and fascinating film by itself, but combined they're an incredible force. Gerry's interrogation is an immemorable moment in cinematic history, including disconcerting scenes of police officials watching the torture in silence.

The film doesn't let up for a moment. The courtroom drama is clearly peripheral to the theme, but it provides some of the film's most nailbiting moments. A few bits in the latter half of the movie may seem a bit redundant (similar things happening over and over again in prison) all that is obscured by the sheer screen presence of Daniel Day Lewis. In fact, the only time you are not riveted by the all-round powerhouse acting is when U2's poignant background score has taken center stage.

An absolute must for fans of political films, and a terrific drama for the rest of us. Highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars The IRA Trilogy.
Three films that stand out in terms of explaining the movement of the Irish Republican Army are Michael Collins, Bloody Sunday and The Name of the Father, viewed in that order. Michael Collins explains the 1916 Irish Rising against British rule and the subsequent assassination of Collins for making a deal with the British to allow them to keep the North, a problem that still exists to this day, albeit calmed down somewhat because of the peace agreements. Bloody Sunday is about the armed assault by British Paratroopers that shot up a catholic peace protest in 1972. It is like watching Saving Private Ryan in the streets. That court case is still ongoing today. The Name of the Father is in Britain and is worth seeing again because of new events.

In 2005 The Prime Minister apologised for one of the worst miscarriages of British justice - the jailing those accused of the Guilford IRA bombings. This film is about what happened. Eleven people sent to prison over the attacks in Guildford and Woolwich in 1974. They were subject to such a horrific political ordeal and a deep miscarriage of injustice. The wrongly convicted were members and friends of two Irish families living in the UK at the time - the Conlons and Maguires. Although the Conlon father and son never did meet in prison (like they do in the film) it is still pretty much an accurate portrayal or police brutality and the corruption of the justice system.

In many ways the film has been deemed "inappropriate" along side other films such a "Bloody Sunday" because apparently they do not add anything of value to restoring peace, but the truth is that this kind of material has been censored in Ireland and the UK until the 1990s when for the first time the party of Sinn Fein was allowed a voice to represent Catholics in Northern Ireland - Jerry Adams was actually allowed to appear on the news and talk.

The problem is that the government is not responsible for the courts which allowed people to be subjected to the kind of ordeal that these two families went through, scapegoats for a political body that wanted to keep censoring the full extent of the troubles in the North.

This is a well-made movie with some great acting. Riveting stuff through and through and one of the best prison/court dramas who can get your hands on. In light of the Prime Minister's apology, this is work looking into again.

5-0 out of 5 stars Incandescent and savage film!
The tension state and the indignation will involve you and all your senses with this unfair process when an innocent Joseph Condon and his father are blamed of a murder they did not commit .
based on real facts and designed with superb artistic and art direction and a kinetic script , the film is simply ravishing . Emma Thompsom makes an unforgettable role and Daniel Day Lewis confirming his masterful magnetism and his charismatic presence , and showing his Academy Award was not a random fact .
Jim Sheridan has made until now a real masterpiece ; and the Hollywood attitude with this film was another unforgiven mistake .
But the time which is the supreme judge will put in order that unhappy decision . Remember for instance , Citizen Kane against The grapes of wrath , Dr. Strangelove against My fair Lady or the Judgemnent at Nuremberg to name just a few .
A classic film! ... Read more

Asin: 0783227906
Subjects:  1. Feature Film-drama   


The Commitments
Director: Alan Parker
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
DVD (19 August, 2003)
list price: $14.98
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Editorial Review

An irresistible, comic drama from director Alan Parker (Evita, Mississippi Burning), overflowing and alive with passion, humor, and music, The Commitments showcases some old R&B standards in a new light. A headstrong, fast-talking, ambitious young Dubliner (Robert Arkins) fancies himself a promoter of talent, and sets about assembling and packaging a local Irish R&B band. His group of self-absorbed, backbiting, but stunningly talented individuals begin to succeed beyond his wildest dreams, until petty jealousies and recrimination threaten to scuttle the whole deal. A moody, vivid, and soulful exploration of the Dublin club scene as well as a showcase for some wonderful unknown actors, the film (and its wonderful soundtrack) also features the actual band covering classic soul tunes from the likes of Otis Redding and Sam and Dave. It's that combination of soul and soul music that makes The Commitments a special little film. --Robert Lane ... Read more


  • Color
  • Closed-captioned
  • Dolby
Reviews (80)

5-0 out of 5 stars A parable
It's hard to believe that the first time I saw this flick, I didn't like it much. The second time it grew on me. Now I have all of "The Barrytown Trilogy" films and thrive on 'em all.

I don't want to cover again that which many a reviewer has covered of the plot. Yeah, Jimmy Rabbitte decides that, since his portion of Dublin (where I was a couple of nights ago), the North Side is the "black" section of Europe, then a soul band is most appropriate there.

"Jimmy" was the consummate band manager, knowing the makeup of the band members, the way they should look, and who would even give most valuable advice! He relied on Joey "The Lips" Fagan (Johnny Murphy whom I recently saw in a DVD of "Waiting for Godot") who's "as old as me dad" for advice, despite Joey's own resume being of dubious merit.

By the way, Maura O'Malley played Joey's mother. She should have gotten an Oscar for her role, as an overprotective, believing, hopelessly naive loner. She was one of the funniest characters in the film!

When those to audition turned up at Jimmy's doorstep, Colm Meaney, Jimmy's father, showed up in the cast. He's an Elvis fan to the core, proclaiming that "Elvis is God" when Jimmy refers to Elvis's "fat goot" (my best typed version of the Dooblin accent.) Then there's the scene of the Rabbitte's living room wall: the picture of Pope John Paul II and above it, the picture of Elvis. And later, of course, Joey shares his experiences in Graceland with Jimmy's dad--another claim of dubious merit, but for the sake of their personal gratification, all there, including Jimmy, listen to the stories as if they're gospel.

When the many show up at the Rabbitte's to audition, one could laugh one's "goots" out. Everywhere from Joan Baez fans, to heavy metal guitarists, to bluegrass bands singing that "Elvis was a cajun," to which Jimmy Senior nearly has a fit.

As to the music, it's incredible. One sees them develop, from Jimmy telling the singers to NOT use their Dublin accent while singing, to their self consciousness. Andrew Strong (Deco) lead singer, is an idiot "bus conductor" with a phenomenal voice. In fact, Jimmy first sees him, "pissed out o' me mind" at a wedding at which the guitarist and bassist and their former band, And And And is playing. I understand from scuttlebutt and some other reviews here that Strong was 16 when he was in The Commitments. If that's so, he has a long career before him. I thought his voice excelled, and his means of presenting himself--another element of his performance that Jimmy liked, was even better. I'm looking for some of his other albums now (though two days ago a friend of Roddy Doyle's in Dublin told me Strong his trying harder than he's making it in music. If that's true, that's a pity. There's some REAL talent there, something for which I'm truly envious of Strong.)

When I watch the film again (and again) there's little human elements that make me laugh more each time: Bernie (Bronagh Gallagher) is one of so many that she has to babysit during a rehearsal. The baby there is terrified by the noise, first of Deco pounding the drums, then of the whole practice. So he's crying uncontrollably, while Bernie is trying to simultaneously sing and rack his stroller; little things going on in the streets while the characters are walking around; little fights that break out. Even, when Joey announced that "the Lord" had sent him then told his dad, Colm Meany asked, "On a Suzuki??" There's so much there, spices that add to the overall flavo(u)r of a wonderful film.

Why a parable? Well, at the end, Jimmy's had it. The band members, at their best performance of all, are at each others' throats like they all have rabies, Wilson Pickett didn't show up at their performance like Joey had promised. So he marched off. Joey caught up with him on his little Suzuki. Jimmy say, in effect, "I was the only one who listed to your BS, about all the pros you'd played with, now I listened to you about Wilson Pickett and all you did was let me down." Joey tried to convince him that, if the band had made it, that would have been predictable. But what was far more important came true: the the members had immeasurably raised their expectations. So it was all worth it.

There is so much more that could be said about this film. To me, it's a parable, and a classic. If you're ears are weak to "the F word," then you might not want to see it. If you want to see and hear some real talent, and enjoy a good story well-told, then don't miss "The Commitments."

4-0 out of 5 stars What a fun movie
The Commitments is a unique film. Based on a Roddy Doyle novel, the characters performed most of the music for the movie. The vision is to bring soul to the lower and middle classes in Dublin. A group of misfits is assembled and polished into a surprisingly talented band.

This really was a fun movie. I liked it a lot. The music was great, the story moved along well, the ending was just how I could have imagined it.I think you'll like it.

5-0 out of 5 stars I'm a Fan and I'm Proud!
If you are at least 45 yrs old, love 60's R&B and Soul, not adverse to cursing, and like to be entertained, this movie is a Must See! The fact that none of the principal actors (except Colm Meany at his best) were not actors at all, makes this a spotlight for the talents of director Alan Parker.My continuing to write about this terrific film would be a waste you your time.Instead, GO GET IT!!!!! ... Read more

Asin: 6305622922
Subjects:  1. Feature Film-drama   

Waking Ned Devine
Director: Kirk Jones (III)
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
DVD (07 September, 2004)
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Editorial Review

When local wag Jackie O'Shea (Ian Bannen) discovers that one of his neighbors in the village of Tulaigh Mohr is a lottery winner he sees a chance to share in the wealth. Things get complicated when Jackie and his pal Michael O'Sullivan (David Kelly) discover that the winner, Ned Devine, died of shock at the very moment he learned of becoming a millionaire. Undaunted, Jackie and Michael dispose of the lucky stiff and hatch a plot to impersonate him and claim the prize. Soon the whole village is involved and the plot rapidly thickens.

This film has been compared to The Full Monty, but it lacks the vein of desperation that added depth to that film. Instead, Waking Ned Devine is closer in tone to classic British comedies like Whisky Galore!, with its cast of eccentrics gleefully conspiring to outwit the authorities. Those with a low tolerance for twinkly eyed Irish charm might be tempted to steer clear, although the movie is saved, for the most part, by its central performances. Bannen is superb as an old man who is clearly hungry for any excitement he can drum up and David Kelly is remarkable as his scrawny sidekick. Kelly has had a long career as a character actor in film and television, but here he has a chance to really let loose.His naked motorcycle ride is a marvelous set piece and in all of his other scenes his twitchy, perfectly timed performance quite simply steals the movie. --Simon Leake ... Read more


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Reviews (148)

4-0 out of 5 stars Ticket ganador
En la tradición de comedia ligera como "The Full Monty", llega una simpática historia de loterías, ganadores y perdedores en un pueblito pintoresco de Irlanda.
La pequeña villa de Tully More, población de 52 personas, se oculta dentro de las vastas clinas irlandesas; es un evento nacional, la lotería del estado, la que saca del anonimato a este poblado, cuando uno de sus miembros compra el ticket ganador.
Dos viejos amigos, Jackie y Michael, complices en toda suerte de aventuras y travesuras, descubren la buena noticia. Ahora quieren descubrir al ganador para convencerlo de compartir parte del premio con ellos.
En búsqueda de pistas y pruebas para desenmascarar a la millonaria víctima, se ven envueltos en graciosos y disparatados enredos. Hasta que por descarte, dan con el ganador, que ha permanecido misteriosamente callado y anónimo: NedDevine.
No es de extrañarse, pues el dulce viejito Ned se murió de emoción cuando se enteró de la noticia. La lotería ciertamente cambió su vida.
Antes que se enfrie su cadáver, un complot se arma en Tully More para reclamar ante las autoridades el premio de Ned.
Alegre y picaresca, esta comedia refrescante parece coquetearle al optimismo. Celebrar la amistad y proveer un genuino entretenimiento, El Divino Ned es deliciosa, excéntrica; una historia encantadora, con personajes algo caricaturescos que no buscan dañar a nadie; algo poco común en las historias recientes que han desfilado por la gran pantalla.
Si busca unas cuantas risas, El Divino Ned las prove

5-0 out of 5 stars Charming Fairy Tale
You may not immediately spot the leprechauns, wizards, and other tell-tale signs, but as you watch `Waking Ned Devine', you will soon realize that what you are seeing is an Irish fairy tale, simple and pure. The signs are all there, and if you are sharp, you will soon start to catch them. First to make its appearance is the pot of gold, disguised as a winning lottery ticket held by some lucky neighbor in the tiny village of Tulaigh Morh. Next, you will discover that the two old men scheming for a piece of the action, blarney filled Jackie O'Shea (Ian Bannen) and his expressive faced scarecrow pal Michael O'Sullivan (David Kelly), are but thinly disguised mischievous leprechauns. You will meet a hog keeper (James Nesbitt) waiting for the kiss of a fair maid (Susan Lynch) to reveal him for the prince that he is, and an old hag so black hearted and malevolent that all know her as a witch. And when Ned Devine, the neighbor with the winning ticket, dies from the shock of it, his ghost appears to old Jackie in a dream, setting in motion a plan fanciful as any Puss in Boots ever dreamed of that has the whole village working to outwit the vigilance of the lottery board and the malevolence of the witch, to all claim a piece of the fortune at rainbow's end.
`Waking Ned Devine' will enchant you and make you laugh. From its opening scene until the last verse of The Parting Glass is sung, it will charm you and leave you with a smile, wanting to watch it again.

5-0 out of 5 stars Overlooked Gem
Since others have synopsized this little gem of a movie, I'll just say I enjoyed it *very* much.It's a world away from Hollywood.So, if you're into guns and buns, Waking Ned Devine won't work for you.Tully More and it's people were all convincingly brought to life by the excellent acting and directing.The scene at the end where some of the townsmen climb a hill overlooking the sea to toast the memory of their benefactor was very moving.

Sadly, Actor Ian Bannen, who played Jackie O'Shea, was killed in an automobile accident one year after its release.And writer/director Kirk Jones has not directed or written for another movie.He deserves better. ... Read more

Asin: B00000ILEC
Subjects:  1. Feature Film-comedy   


Director: Mel Gibson
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
DVD (08 January, 2002)
list price: $19.99 -- our price: $14.99
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Editorial Review

Mel Gibson's Oscar-winning 1995 Braveheart is an impassioned epic about William Wallace, the 13th-century Scottish leader of a popular revolt against England's tyrannical Edward I (Patrick McGoohan). Gibson cannily plays Wallace as a man trying to stay out of history's way until events force his hand, an attribute that instantly resonates with several of the actor's best-known roles, especially Mad Max. The subsequent camaraderie and courage Wallace shares in the field with fellow warriors is pure enough and inspiring enough to bring envy to a viewer, and even as things go wrong for Wallace in the second half, the film does not easily cave in to a somber tone. One of the most impressive elements is the originality with which Gibson films battle scenes, featuring hundreds of extras wielding medieval weapons. After Eisenstein's Alexander Nevsky, Orson Welles's Chimes at Midnight, and even Kenneth Branagh's Henry V, you might think there is little new that could be done in creating scenes of ancient combat; yet Gibson does it. --Tom Keogh ... Read more


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Reviews (741)

5-0 out of 5 stars one of the best
I feel sorry for everyone who rated this movie with 4 and less stars, they miss out on the enjoyment of one of the best movies ever.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Fabulous Film, Two Thumbs Up!
Mel Gibson has produced and helped brew up a masterpiece.
William Wallace is a Scottish commoner, a bit on the rowdy, adventurous side, but for the most part normal.
To summarize this epic in a sentence or two, Wallace fights for the freedom of Scotland, and slightly because of a rage triggered by the murder of his beloved, Murron. After countless attacks and a couple of battles, Wallace's life comes to an end.
This is a phenomenal movie, though it has very discreet imperfections (which all movies have), it is thought-provoking and well beyond poignant. I must warn you that this film might have you sobbing, it had me doing so.
Don't expect a fairytale ending, and don't expect everyone to be happy. I grant you, yes, there is a lot of fighting, I, not one to be affected by gore, did have to shield my eyes from the slaughtering, but the battle seens are worth the movie.
This is not an intellectual film, and it is not an action flick. It's a work of art.

1-0 out of 5 stars Actually it's mostly baloney.
William Wallace was nothing like the dude portrayed in the movie.For one, he did not get to fornicate with the crown princess.In reality, at Wallace's death, the princess was only a little child.If he DID fornicate with her, then so much the better that a pedophhile was torn to pieces.

On another front, I have to say that the plot is rather cheesy.The good guy is done injustice (his woman was slain) and is out for revenge.That's his primary motive.Somewhere along the way the freedom of Scotland got into the fold, almost as an afterthought.In this regard it is not unlike the US's case for the Iraqi invasion -- freedom being used as a tool to elevate a completely mundane cause.But this is after all a Western movie for the consumption of the Western masses.Certain things sell well -- the more-or-less revisionist history of a fight for freedom being one, the other being the good guy getting the girl -- and are exploited to the fullest extent.

In the whole, this is altogether a rather banal film.Hence the 1 star (actually 0.5). ... Read more

Asin: B00003CX95
Subjects:  1. Feature Film-action/Adventure   


The Celtic Heartbeat Collection, Vol. 2
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (24 February, 1998)
list price: $12.98
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Editorial Review

There's so much gray area in the music generally termed Celtic that it's hard to know what to make of it. While some dives straight into the new age bins, much is as authentic as a shot of Bushmill's. This release is closer to Irish breakfast tea. It's new agey in spots, but with enough of the real thing to offer satisfaction. There are no pretensions of being traditional, and there's a definite attempt to woo the rock market, as on the song that finds the masterful Christy Moore joined by Bono and the Edge from U2. Nor are the women ignored. Kate Bush contributes her first new offering in a long time, singing in quite passable Gaelic. The crowning glory, ironically, belongs to someone who at one time seemed determined to put her heritage behind her--Sinead O'Connor. Here she gives a glorious sean nos--old style--rendition of "He Moves Through the Fair," one of the great songs from the tradition, with beautiful ornamentation, more than enough to tip the scales heavily in this collection's favor. --Chris Nickson ... Read more

Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful music!
I happened to pick this album up for a pittance at a discount store. It has provided hours of enjoyment with a variety of songs ranging from sprited, (Riverdance), to the poignant Sky Road, which actually brought tears to my grown daughter...wonderful lyrics! A nice introduction into the world of Celtic music.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not what i thought
Okay, so i truly thought this album would have some traditional celtic music without the new age fancy smancy.Boy was i wrong.The songs worthy of mention are "Eanair", which is a beautiful song and one of the best on the album, "The Sky Road" which is touching and sad, "The Child Dierdre" which too is beautiful, "Mna Na hEireann" is so so wonderful and just flat out pretty even if i don't know what the song means, "Sean Deora" is my favorite song on the whole album and the vocals are outstanding (kudos to Kila), and "He moved through the Fair" is beautiful all unto itself.The well known "Riverdance" is good too, leaves the dancing to yer imagination.I just have to say that some of the songs unmentioned sound way to close to western country music for my liking, and the strange new age songs help throw the stars down to 3.But the songs i mentioned are awesome.I probably would buy this album knowing what it was just for those songs.Best o Tidings to all.

5-0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Songs from Great Irish Artists
If you love Irish music then this is one for your collection! All 13 songs are either adaptations from old folk music (such as Kate Bush singing {in Irish} "Mna Na Heireann" and Sinead O'Conner singing {almost} acappella "He Moved Through the Fair") or originals performed by Irish greats like Christy Moore, Sean Keane and Frances Black. This has a few toe tappers but it is mainly a mellow album full of tin whistles and uillian pipes. It has become one of those rare albums I can listen to in its entirety. I'm sure you will enjoy it as much as I! ... Read more

Asin: B000006C0U
Subjects:  1. 90's    2. Celtic    3. Celtic/Irish    4. Contemporary Celtic    5. Contemporary Instrumental    6. Int'l & World Music    7. Irish Folk    8. Pop   

The Matchmaker
Director: Mark Joffe
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
DVD (14 September, 1999)
list price: $19.95
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Editorial Review

As she does in The Truth About Cats and Dogs, JaneaneGarofalo proves she's a capableleading lady--beautiful, charming, self-effacing, and what used to be referred to as sharp as a tack.Garofalo plays Marcy, aide to dim Massachusetts senator McGlory (Jay O. Sanders). Denis Leary isappropriately slimy as a fellow aide. The senator and Nick dispatchMarcy to the remote (and fictitious)Irish town of Ballinagra, where she's supposed to unearth relatives touse in the senator's PR campaign. Along the way, Marcy not only encounters the eccentric locals, butfinds herself in the maelstromof the town's annual matchmaking festival. The single Marcyinadvertently catches the eye of the movie'seponymous matchmaker Dermot (a captivating Milo O'Shea). Dermot senses sparks between Marcy andthe equally cynical, recently returned local boy, Sean (David O'Hara),once a successful journalist who'sreturned home to work on a book. The intimacies of the small town, the relationships between the locals, and the dialogue are credible andengaging. Look for beautiful cinematography and music, too. Also notable is the movie's ability to convey the feel of a foreign film while injecting humor that's both sarcastically American and yet Irish in trademark. --N.F. Mendoza ... Read more


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Reviews (84)

5-0 out of 5 stars David O'Hara
I love David O'Hara. He is a very good actor and a nice man. I loved him in braveheart and I loved him in The Matchmaker. This film gives mesome hope, every time I remember it. I watched it years ago, and I realize that I never forgot it. Thanx to lower budget, anti-hollywood, sincere films.

1-0 out of 5 stars NEAR BOTTOM
Garofalo acting killed this movie, no wonder she went into politics, dont waste your money

5-0 out of 5 stars Romantic Comedy Done Right
I love this movie!The scenery is breathtaking, the acting is first rate, and the story is charming.This movie transports you to Ireland.The fictional village of Bali Na Gragh (sp?) is overcast yet welcoming, and the people all look real (not like extras on a Hollywood set).It is refreshing to find a romantic comedy that does not take place in an urban landscape.You won't find any Mystic Tanned lads or lasses here!Janeane Garafolo is gorgeously pale, and looks like a real woman.Her acting here is first rate, as usual.After watching the movie 8 times, it is hard to imagine anyone else playing the role of Marcy.Her "match", Sean, played by David O'Hara is one of my favorite male movie characters ever.He is a charming, intelligent cad with a heart of gold.O'Hara is definately not a Brad Pitt or Ben Affleck (thank God!), but man is he sexy!It's about time a romantic comedy has a male lead that isn't prettier than his female costar.The matchmaker, played by Milo O'Shea is the glue that holds this terrific story together.O'Shea's narration throughout the film is hilarious.All the supporting cast is excellent, although I don't understand why Denis Leary gets top billing in this film (after Garafolo).His part was very small, only somewhat pivotal, and could have been played by anyone.The movie follows Marcy to Ireland as she searches for Senator John McGlory's Irish roots.She happens to arrive during the matchmaking festival and meets Sean, who thoroughly irritates her.You can guess what happens next.I usually hate romantic comedies.Any Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks combo makes me run for the hills!If you are like me, watch The Matchmaker.If the quirky, realistic story doesn't endear you, the soundtrack will!In fact, my ONLY complaint about The Matchmaker is that the soundtrack is not available.Do not miss this movie!It is probably sitting on the bargain shelf at your local video store, beacause not enough people know about it, or they are lacking taste.Step away from Sleepless in Seattle!!Give The Matchmaker a chance. ... Read more

Asin: 6304798520
Subjects:  1. Feature Film-comedy   

Forgiven, Not Forgotten
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (26 September, 1995)
list price: $11.98 -- our price: $10.99
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Editorial Review

With one foot in traditional Irish music and the other in smooth, sophisticated pop, the Corrs--a family quartet made up of three sisters and their brother--seem to have all the bases covered. On their appealing debut album, the group plays it both ways, leading with fetching love songs such as "Runaway" and the title track but incorporating fiddle, tin whistle, and bodhrán into nearly every track while tossing in snippets of traditional-leaning material such as "Carraroe Jig" and "Erin Shore" for good measure. Imagine the Spice Girls if they could play their own instruments and were inclined to do so down at the local pub. If that seems like a stretch, listen to the gossamer strains of "Heaven Knows" or "The Right Time" while downing a few pints. You'll eventually see the connection. --Daniel Durchholz ... Read more

Reviews (112)

4-0 out of 5 stars Simply Irish Brilliance
The Corrs debuted with this folkish Irish with a mix of pop album release and instantly were a success and it is not hard to see how they reached a high pinnacle early in their soft rock/pop career. Hit songs like 'Forgiven, Not Forgotten', 'Runaway', 'Love to Love You' and 'Closer' showed listeners the talent all four had. The Irish folksong interludes her great as well.

I cannot find fault with this CD or the group's performances however I feel that success went to the band's heads and following releases did suffer

2-0 out of 5 stars Consider only if you already love the Corrs; otherwise avoid
This CD consists of 6 fine Irish instrumental pieces and 9 average pop recordings which are not at all complementary.The title track's chorus, for instance, is repeated 17 times in just over 4 minutes & many other of the Corrs' own compositions included herein are equally inane and repetitive; so much so that I'm inclined to think that the Irish instrumentals subtrack from this album more than they add to it.The pop songs could then just be accepted as conventional popular music then & we wouldn't be exposed to the disconnect that is apparent when we have the Irish instrumentals to compare to it.Consequently, this CD feels like an album of the Chieftains randomly mixed up with something from the likes of Belinda Carlisle, Debbie Gibson, Shania Twain, or Brittany Spears.If you are a popular musc fan, take your pick elsewhere & if you are looking for Irish music try sampling something from Sinead O'Conner (perhaps the CD, Sean-Nos Nua), anything from Enya, and/or something from Clannad.Cheers!

5-0 out of 5 stars Forgiven, not forgotten, indeed...
Perfection. If I had to pick a single album to listen to for the rest of my life, this would be it. It's like Kevin Gilbert combined with Enya. An absolutely exquisite experience to listen to.

Please give this album a chance even if you didn't like their later albums. *I* didn't like their later albums, but I swear by this one. This, their first, is without a doubt their best. ... Read more

Asin: B000005J7X
Subjects:  1. Adult Alternative Pop/Rock    2. Celtic Fusion    3. Celtic Pop    4. Pop    5. Rock   


Ireland Of The Welcomes
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Real Taste of Ireland
I was given a subscription as a gift back in 1995 and have been receiving this publication ever since.

The articles are varied and extremely well written.You'll find subjects as predictable as the life of St Patrick and how Waterford crystal is made to how bogs are formed and the treasures that lie within them.The photography will make you want to visit every square inch of the country and you'll think the colors have been enhanced by computer but, if you go, you'll find they are true to life!

One of my favorite regular articles is by Christopher Moriarty who suggests interesting travel on Ireland's lesser known roads in Byways rather than Highways.You can (and I do) use these ideas for trips around the country while finding out interesting facts about places most tour buses pass quickly by.

I look forward every other month to finding this magazine in the mail.Subscriptions for other magazines have come and gone but this is one I'll be getting for a long time coming. ... Read more

Asin: B00006KJCO
Sales Rank: 1337
Subjects:  1. History    2. General    3. Geography . Atlases. Maps   


Looking Back
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (14 March, 1995)
list price: $17.98 -- our price: $17.98
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Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars File Next To "Babes In The Wood"
I found Mary Black back in the 90's through her very popular album "Babes In The Wood". Since then I have purchased several of her other albums but never found one that quite captured the incredible magic of "Babes"...until now.I listened to this album chasing the sunset westward on a cool fall evening and fell in love with this woman's singing all over again.The song "The Loving Time" really got to me.I need to review her discography further to find if there are more albums that strike in the same range.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mary Black's Best Songs
I got this CD by chance at my local thrift store but I'm writing to tell you that it is worth every penny Amazon is asking for it.Mary Black has a beautiful voice that enchants and keeps you coming back for more.I actually got tears in my eyes listening her sing "Ellis Island", a song about an immigrant leaving for Amercia and saying goodbye.At the same time, your toe will tap along to songs like "Carolina Rua" and "Soul Sister".Emmylou Harris sings a duet with Mary in the well known "A Woman's Heart". And "Bright Blue Rose" is spiritually uplifting.My very favorite song on this album is "No Frontiers" where Black sings with such feeling; her voice just soars.I highly recommend this album as it has most of Mary Black's best songs up to the date it was released (1995).

5-0 out of 5 stars A1 Collection
Mary Black has a beautiful voice and some magnificent songs, but she suffers from albums that have too much filler.This collection solves that problem.

Looking Back contains a collection of fantastic performancesthat has earned a place on my all-time list.Do yourself a favor and getit. ... Read more

Asin: B000000DAK
Sales Rank: 66010
Subjects:  1. Celtic/Irish    2. Int'l & World Music    3. Pop   


Ballykissangel - Complete Series One & Two
Director: Paul Harrison, Richard Standeven, Simon Massey (II), Dermot Boyd, Alan Macmillan, Paul Duane, Tom Cotter, Peter Lydon, Mike Cocker, N.G. Bristow
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
DVD (20 January, 2004)
list price: $79.98 -- our price: $68.99
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Editorial Review

When Father Peter Clifford (Peter Tompkinson) comes from Manchester to the small Irish village of Ballykissangel, he knows he will be facing some opposition. After all, what is an English priest doing in Ireland, of all places? He soon finds out that the town of Ballykissangel poses many more challenges than just accepting the unfamiliar priest. The delightfully mischievous cast of characters include Brian Quigley, the local businessman and entrepreneur; Donal and Liam, his faithful sidekicks; Siobhan, the frequently prescient veterinarian; and the tough owner of Fitzgerald's Bar, Assumpta. As the characters become more familiar throughout the series, their tribulations and triumphs are all the more realistic. The intricate characterizations, beautiful scenery, and delightfully dry humor ensure that fans of the English series All Creatures Great and Small will also enjoy Ballykissangel, and savor its distinctly Irish twist. --Amanda Powter ... Read more


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Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazingly true to life
After several trips to the Vale of Avoca, it's easy to see how one could easily fall into line with the characters of Ballykissangel. From wily Brian Quiqley to quizzical Father Clifford and the highly changeable Niamh. The series truly portrays the idyllic countryside and the lifestyle that is so relaxed. Those who love Ireland and the Irish people will love Ballykissangel as they see the small town through the eyes of the local citizenry. Driving through the countryside, you can see images of Donal and Liam at almost every turn in the road, hoping they are not carring an electronic confessional!

For those who have been waiting, Series 3 will be available in March 2005, so enjoy Series 1 and 2 and be ready for more Irish laughter and fun in the new year. We'll be in Ireland when it makes it debut and we'll hoist a pint in Fitzgerald's in celebration!

4-0 out of 5 stars For those who have a soft spot for Ireland
This drama set in a small town in Ireland is less significant for its substance than for the days-gone-by nostalgia feel of it. It is a wonderfully simple program; a sort of Andy Griffith Show foundation enlivened by modernity. We see an attractive barkeep who has vague qualms with the religion into which she was born begin to respect the new priest in town as he jockeys with his older generational priest-supervisor. Through this prism we can see what we want of Ireland's more recent development. The program encourages us to take sides between the traditionalist (sometimes selfish) church of the past, and a more lively (but less absolute) version of it, as evinced by this young priest from afar who stirs up this town a bit. It's not at all a religious program, mind you; just an overly unrepresentitive portrayal of idyllic Ireland in which you cannot fail to include religion. Full disclosure: I like this show, but I also have Irish blood. I say this because this really is a program which appeals to a particular sort of individual; to one who either has Irish blood and/or for those whom Ireland has some draw. Ireland has an inherent appeal to many such people from around the world. Even if you have never visited it, can you not right now visualize vast green fields and rolling hills bordered by stone walls, snugly cozy pubs filled with glasses of Guiness raised, and smiling faces? Of course, i'm exaggerating here, but you must grant that Ireland is a far more attractive place than many others, at least in a theorhetical quality-of-life sort of way. It's thought of as the sort of place where stress is not as prevalent as where one finds oneself; having a bygone character to it (notwithstanding this not to be as true in actuality, but like in many other things, imagination often persists over reality). If I am making any sense to you with this, Ballykissangel may be to your liking. If you are familiar with Garrison Keillor's pubic radio show, "A Prairie Home Companion" (saturdays 6pm across the USA), Ballykissangel is to Ireland what the fictional town of "Lake Woebegone" is to the American heartland. I recommend both. Both evince what a part of us long for (if you are a nostalgic sort of person, regardless of your age--even a 25 year old can long for previous eras) and even though such may not suit us, it does make us inclined to enjoy programs like "A Prarie Home Companion" and "Ballykissangel". I hope this review of sorts was of use to you. Cheers! P.S. If you do give this program a try and find it to your liking I'd like to let you know that the "set" of Ballykissangel isn't one at all; but rather is an one-street town (called Avoca) that was occassionally commandeered for filming so that you can actually travel to it! To have a drink in its pub, visit its church (as I have) and so on is a somewhat surreal experience; as you walk into "the program", so to speak, that you have enjoyably watched from afar. Now, where else can you do something like that!

5-0 out of 5 stars Brilliant DVD combo
The wonderful thing about this DVD combo is that we BallyK fans are rewarded with neat little features such as a tour of Avoca (BallyK) and a really well made documentary on the success of the series featuring interviews with all of the past and more recent cast. If you love the series like I do, it's just wonderful to have series one and two available at any time and to be able to flip through to inspiring scenes or particularly touching moments.
I just wish they would release the other series...I actually love the show all the way to series 6 so let's keep our fingers crossed...
Marc ... Read more

Asin: B0000DZSYE
Subjects:  1. Television   


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Magazines - History - Wild About Ireland?   (images)

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