The Boys from County Clare ★½

If this is set in the mid '60s as the caption at the start of the film claims, then how come Teddy references not only Sgt Pepper's, which came out in 1967, but also the signing to Liverpool of Kevin Keegan from Scunthorpe, which didn't occur until 1971??

I last saw this about a decade ago. I didn't think much of it then, and I'm afraid I don't think much of it now either. It's an insubstantial bit of fluff that delivers a cliched depiction of period Ireland that comes across as part tourist office, part John Ford. Despite the presence of some good actors like Bernard Hill, Colm Meaney and Shaun Evans, the film wastes them with some cringeworthy material and a dull story that's hard to care for. Speaking of cringe, the majority of the actors playing the bandmates deliver the kind of mugging normally reserved for the performers of Mrs Brown's Boys, along with some of the worst scouse accents I've ever heard. The film also stars Andrea Corr, so it's worth it should your local pub quiz ever ask the question 'what was the name of the film that gave Andrea Corr a starring role?' but, given that the film goes under about a half dozen different names (The Boys from County Clare, The Boys and Girl from County Clare, The Great Ceilidh War...), that probably renders it pointless.

There is one highlight, the chance to see T.P. McKenna in what proved to be his penultimate film role; a brief cameo as a frustrated, swearing fleadh announcer.