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Irish in America

"Abie's Irish Rose" (1929: USA) Charles Rogers, Nancy Carroll, J. Farrell MacDonald, Nick Cogley Dir: Victor Fleming -Filming of a long-running Broadway play of the 1920s, one of the longest running plays in Broadway history. -Cultures clash when a Jewish boy and an Irish girl fall in love in France during WWI and both return home to the USA to be married in an Episcopal church. Concerned about his father's reaction to his wife's Irish-Catholic heritage, Abie has Rosemary tell the father that her name is Rosie "Murpheski". The father insists that they marry again before a rabbi, and, just after the second wedding, Rosemary's father arrives with a Catholic priest, her father insisting upon a Catholic wedding. The young couple become alienated from both sets of parents, but all is made well when twins are born.

"Abie's Irish Rose" (1946) (96 min) Joanne Dru, Richard Norris, Michael Chekhov, Eric Blore, Art Baker Dir: A. Edward Sutherland ****** Produced by Bing Crosby -Remake of a long-running Broadway comedy of the 1920s and filmed before in 1929. -Jewish boy and Irish girl want to marry.

"Angels With Dirty Faces" (1938: U.S.A.) (97 min) James Cagney, Ann Sheridan, Pat O'Brien, Humphrey Bogart, George Bancroft, Billy Halop, Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Gabe Dell, Bobby Jordan, Bernard Punsley Dir: Michael Curtiz -The local youths in this film became known as the Dead End Kids in a long series of films. See "Bowery Boys". -When Irish gangster Rocky Sullivan returns to New York City, he meets up with his childhood sweetheart, Laury, and his old buddy, who has become a priest: Father Connolly. Local youths idolize Rocky much to the chagrin of the priest.

"Backdraft" (1991: U.S.A.) (135 min) (rated R) Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, Robert De Niro, Donald Sutherland, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Scott Glenn, Rebecca De Mornay Dir: Ron Howard -Two Irish brothers in Chicago battle each other and fires.

"Bad Boys" (1983) (123 min) (rated R) Sean Penn, Reni Santoni, Ally Sheedy, Eric Gurry, Esai Morales, Jim Moody, Clancy Brown, Alan Ruck Dir: Richard Rosenthal -Film debut for Ally Sheedy -Two leaders of rival teen gangs in Chicago come into conflict in the streets and in detention.

"Badge 373" (1973) (116 min) (rated R) Robert Duvall, Verna Bloom, Henry Darrow, Eddie Eagan, Felipe Luciano, Tina Christina Dir: Howard W. Koch -The film is a fiction inspired by the real life exploits of Eddie Egan, who was a real-life Irish-American NYC cop who was the inspiration for the movie, "The French Connection". -Eddie Ryan, an Irish-American cop in NYC, gets suspended from the force when he is being investigated for what was an accidental death of a suspect. While without his badge, his former partner is murdered as well as his partner's girlfriend. In pursuing justice for his partner on his own, Eddie chases an Hispanic mobster to the top of a crane where the mobster admits responsibility for the killings and complaints of the duplicity of "Anglo-Saxon" justice. Eddie ponders for a moment whether to pull the trigger or to take the killer into custody, but only for a moment.

"The Bells of St. Mary's" (1945) (126 min) Bing Crosby, Ingrid Bergman, Henry Travers, William Gargan, Ruth Donnelly, Joan Carroll, Martha Sleeper, Rhys Williams Dir: Leo McCarey -Sequel to "Going My Way". -Father O'Malley is assigned to a run-down parish.

"Big Brother" (1923: U.S.A.) Tom Moore, Edith Roberts Dir: Allan Dwan -Irish gang leader Jimmy Donovan from New York City's Lower East Side wants to go straight, and he is helped by Father Dan and his girlfriend Kitty Costello. After a wrongful arrest on a robbery charge, Jimmy escapes, captures the culprits, clears his name, and reunites with Kitty.

"The Big Easy" (1987) (100 min) (rated R) Dennis Quaid, Ellen Barkin, Nead Beatty, John Goodman, Lisa Jane Persky, Ebbe Roe Smith, Tom O'Brien, Charles Ludlam Dir: Jim McBride (also directed "The Informant") -In the Big Easy (aka New Orleans), Police Lt. Remy McSwain finds the situation heating up when he starts working closely with an assistant district attorney.

"The Big Parade" (1925: U.S.A.) (141 min) Tom O'Brien, Renee Adoree, Karl Dane, John Gilbert, Hobart Bosworth, Claire McDowell Dir: King Vidor -Some say one of the best WWI films ever made. -Three Americans soldiers in France during WWI vie for the attentions of a French woman before they are sent to the front. Irish-American Bull O'Hara, a barman turned soldier, is killed along with his friend Slim. Wealthy Jim Apperson is disabled and returns to America, but he later returns to France for the woman he loves.

"The Blood Crowd" See: "The McMasters"

"The Blue Eagle" (1926: U.S.A.) Robert Edeson, George O'Brien, William Russell Dir: John Ford -Father Joe mediates between two Irish gang leaders: George D'Arcy and Big Tim Ryan, suggesting that the two box at the parish house with himself as the only spectator.


.....The Dead End Kids
"Dead End" (1937)
"Crime School" (1938)
"Angels With Dirty Faces" (1938)
"They Made Me a Criminal" (1939)
"Hell's Kitchen" (1939)
"The Angels Wash Their Faces" (1939)
"On Dress Parade" (1939)

.....The Dead End Kids and Little Tough Guys
"Little Tough Guy" (1938)
"Call a Messenger" (1939)
"You're Not So Tough" (1940)
"Give Us Wings" (1940)
"Hit the Road" (1941)
"Mob Town" (1941)
"Tough As They Come" (1942)
"Mug Town" (1943)
"Keep 'Em Slugging" (1943)

.....East Side Kids
"East Side Kids" (1940)
"Boys of the City" (1940)
"That Gang of Mine" (1940)
"Pride of the Bowery" (1941)
"Flying Wild" (1941)
"Bowery Blitzkrieg" (1941)
"Spooks Run Wild" (1941)
"Mr. Wise Guy" (1942)
"Let's Get Tough!" (1942)
"Smart Alecks" (1942)
"'Neath Brooklyn Bridge" (1942)
"Kid Dynamite" (1943)
"Clancy Street Boys" (1943)
"Ghosts on the Loose" (1943)
"Mr. Muggs Steps Out" (1943)
"Million Dollar Kid" (1944)
"Follow the Leader" (1944)
"Block Busters" (1944)
"Bowery Champs" (1944)
"Docks of New York" (1945)
"Mr. Muggs Rides Again" (1945)
"Come Out Fighting" (1945)

.....Bowery Boys
"Live Wires" (1946)
"In Fast Company" (1946)
"Bowery Bombshell" (1946)
"Spook Busters" (1946)
"Mr. Hex" (1946)
"Hard Boiled Mahoney" (1947)
"News Hounds" (1947)
"Bowery Buckaroos" (1947)
"Angels' Alley" (1948)
"Jinx Money" (1948)
"Smugglers' Cove" (1948)
"Trouble Makers" (1948)
"Fighting Fools" (1949)
"Hold That Baby!" (1949)
"Angels in Disguise" (1949)
"Master Minds" (1949)
"Blonde Dynamite" (1950)
"Lucky Losers" (1950)
"Triple Trouble" (1950)
"Blues Busters" (1950)
"Bowery Battalion" (1951)
"Ghost Chasers" (1951)
"Let's Go Navy" (1951)
"Crazy Over Horses" (1951)
"Hold That Line" (1952)
"Here Come the Marines" (1952)
"Feudin' Fools" (1952)
"No Holds Barred" (1952)
"Jalopy" (1953)
"Loose in London" (1953)
"Clipped Wings" (1953)
"Private Eyes" (1953)
"Paris Playboys" (1954)
"The Bowery Boys Meet the Monsters" (1954)
"Jungle Gents" (1954)
"Bowery to Bagdad" (1955)
"High Society" (1955)
"Spy Chasers" (1955)
"Jail Busters" (1955)
"Dig That Uranium" (1956)
"Crashing Las Vegas" (1956)
"Fighting Trouble" (1956)
"Hot Shots" (1956)
"Hold That Hypnotist" (1957)
"Spook Chasers" (1957)
"Looking for Danger" (1957)
"Up in Smoke" (1957)
"In the Money" (1958)

"Boys Town" (1938) (96 min) Spencer Tracy, Mickey Rooney, Henry Hull, Gene Reynolds, Leslie Fenton, Addison Richards, Edward Norris, Sidney Miller, Bob Watson, Frankie Thomas Dir: Norman Taurog -Father Flanagan develops a school for juvenile delinquents.

"Bringing Up Father" (1928: USA) J. Farrell MacDonald, Polly Moran Dir: Jack Conway -One of many filmed versions of the highly popular newspaper cartoon called "Jiggs and Maggie" by Cartoonist George McManus. -Practical Jiggs and his socially-ambitious wife Maggie enjoy a laugh at Dinty Moore's pub on a night where the customers take a break from the drink for a brawl.

"The Brothers McMullen" (1995) (97 min) (rated R) Edward Burns, Jack Mulcahy, Mike McGlone, Connie Britton, Shari Albert, Elizabeth P. McKay, Maxine Bahns, Jennifer Joslyn Dir: Edward Burns *** Writer: Edward Burns -Three young adult brothers in Long Island deal with their relationships with each other and the women in their lives.

"The Cohens and the Kellys" (1926-1933: USA) George Sidney, J. Farrell MacDonald, Mack Swain, Vera Gordon, Olive Hasbrouck, Charlie Murray, Jason Robards, Kate Price Dir: Harry Pollard; William James Craft -In all seven films, the Jewish father is played by George Sidney. In five of the films, the Irish father is played by Charlie Murray, and in the remaining two films without Murray, the Irish father is played in one film by J. Farrell MacDonald and in the other film by Mack Swain. -Titles of the films include, "The Cohens and the Kellys in Atlantic City" (1929: U.S.A.) Dir: William James Craft. -This was a seven-film comedy series, showing disapproving Irish and Jewish parents of a young couple, where such parents come to terms with their child's choice of a mate.

"Dark Victory" (1939: U.S.) (106 min) Bette Davis, George Brent, Humphrey Bogart, Geraldine Fitzgerald, Ronald Reagan, Henry Travers, Cora Witherspoon Dir: Edmund Goulding -Humphrey Bogart plays an Irish stable master. -A pampered socialite comes to terms with her terminal illness.

"Dempsey" (1983) (110 min) (not rated) Treat Williams, Sam Waterston, Sally Kellerman, Victoria Tennant, Peter Mark Richman, Jesse Vint, Bonnie Bartlett, James Noble Dir: Gus Trikonis -The life of heavy-weight boxing champion Jack Dempsey from 1919 to 1928.

"The Devil's Disciple" (1959: UK) (82 min) Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Laurence Olivier, Janet Scott, Eva LeGallienne, Harry Andrews, Basil Sydney, George Rose Dir: Guy Hamilton -adaptation of George Bernard Shaw play. -A minister and a rouge team up to dupe the British in the American Revolution.

"Dinty" (1920: USA) Coleen Moore, Wesley Barry Dir: Marshall Neilan -After an Irish woman arrives in San Francisco from Ireland with her son Dinty, she discovers that her husband had died that day. When she later dies herself after working hard as a scrub woman, young Dinty is on his own. He then helps the police break up an opium smuggling operation.

"Easy Come, Easy Go" (1947: U.S.A.) (77 min) Barry Fitzgerald, Diana Lynn, Sonny Tufts, Dick Foran, Frank McHugh, Allen Jenkins Dir: John Farrow -Martin L. Donovan frets about the bets that he places on horses and about his daughter Connie's suitors, especially Kevin O'Connor. Martin does not want his daughter to marry.

"Executive Action" (1973) (91 min) (rated PG) Burt Lancaster, Robert Ryan, Will Geer, John Anderson Dir: David Miller -Dismissed by some critics soon after release as another conspiracy theory about the murder of JFK, but the film has aged well with greater public knowledge of the facts surrounding the death of a president.

"A Family Matter" (1990: Italy/U.S.) (112 min) (unrated) Eric Roberts, Carol Alt, Burt Young, Nick Mancuso, Thomas Calabro, Eli Wallach, Billy Barty Dir: Stuart Margolin -Original Title: "Vendetta: Secrets of a Mafia Bride" -Supermodel Carol Alt is featured as the mafia princess. -An Irish-American hitman falls in love and marries a mafia princess although he knows that he has killed her father.

"Fighting Father Dunn" (1948) (93 min) Pat O'Brien, Darryl Hickman, Una O'Connor, Charles Kemper Arthur Shields, Anna Q. Nilsson, Billy Gray Dir: Ted Tetzlaff -A St. Louis priest establishes a home for homeless newsboys.

"The Fighting 69th" (1940) (90 min) James Cagney, Pat O'Brien, George Brent, Jeffrey Lynn, Alan Hale, Frank McHugh, Dennis Morgan, Dick Foran, John Litel, George Reeves, Frank Coghlan, Jr. Dir: William Keighley -George Brent fled Ireland for America because of his republican activities as an IRA man. Brent later ran the Office of Strategic Services (the predecessor to the CIA), and he had a career in republican party politics. -The Fighting 69th was the famous Irish regiment from the civil war and Father Duffy was its chaplain during WWI. -Corny, but a moving war film about the Irish brigade in WWI.

"The Fighting Sullivans" See: "The Sullivans"

"Finian's Rainbow" (1968) (140 min) Fred Astaire, Petula Clark, Tommy Steele, Don Francks, Keenan Wynn, Barbara Hancock, Al Freeman, Jr., Dir: Francis Ford Coppola -A leprechaun goes to America in pursuit of his stolen pot of gold.

"Fitzcarraldo" (1982) (158 min) (rated PG) Klaus Kinski, Claudia Cardinale, Jose Lewgoy, Paul Hittscher Dir: Werner Herzog -A wealthy Irishman drags his large boat across the jungles of Peru to capture a shipping route on the Amazon in his quest to build a grand opera house there.

"The Flying Irishman" (1939) (72 min) Doug Corrigan, Paul Kelly Dir: Leigh Jason -This is the story of "Wrong-Way Corrigan" who made a spectacular flight but not in the direction supposedly intended.

"Friends of Eddie Coyle" (1973) (102 min) (rated R) Robert Mitchum, Peter Boyle, Richard Jordan, Steven Keats, Alex Rocco, Mitchell Ryan Dir: Peter Yates -adapted by Paul Monash from George V. Higgin's novel. -Underworld and police interact in Boston.

"Gateway" (1938) (73 min) Arleen Whelan, Don Ameche, Gregory Ratoff, Binnie Barnes, Gilbert Roland, Raymond Walburn, John Carradine, Harry Carey Dir: Alfred L. Werker -A naive Dublin colleen immigrates to America by ship, finding herself pursued by men on the voyage, including an American war correspondent, before landing at Ellis Island.

"Gentleman Jim" (1942: U.S.A.) (104 min) Errol Flynn, Jack Carson, Alexis Smith, Alan Hale, John Loder, William Frawley, Minor Watson, Ward Bond, Arthur Shields Dir: Raoul Walsh -Flynn claimed his role as Gentleman Jim was his favorite. -Ward Bond plays John L. Sullivan in the film. -The story of Irish-American Boxer "Gentleman Jim" Corbett during the early years when boxing was an outlawed sport.

"Going My Way" (1944) (126 min) Bing Crosby, Barry Fitzgerald, Rise Stevens, Frank McHugh, James Brown, Gene Lockhart, Jean Heather, Porter Hall, Fortunio Bonanova, Stanley Clements, Carl (Alfalfa) Switzer Dir: Leo McCarey -Crosby and Fitzgerald both won Oscars for their performances in this film. -The sequel to "Going My Way" is "The Bells of St. Mary's". -Father O'Malley tries to win over his superior and a gang of kids.

"Gone With the Wind" (1939) (222 min) Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Leslie Howard, Olivia de Havilland, Thomas Mitchell, Barbara O'Neil, Victor Jory, Laura Hope Crews, Hattie McDaniel, Ona Munson, Harry Davenport, Ann Rutherford, Evelyn Keyes, Carroll Nye, Paul Hurst, Isabel Jewell, Cliff Edwards, Ward Bond, Butterfly McQueen, Rand Brooks, Eddie Anderson, Oscar Polk, Jane Darwell, William Bakewell, Violet Kemble-Cooper, Eric Linden, George Reeves Dir: Victor Flemming -Note: The notion that a Gaelic Irishman would have managed to become a slave-owner in the American South seems a bit far-fetched. During the antebellum south, Irish Gaels were used for high-risk labor because they were easily replaced and slaves had value. -Based upon a novel by Margaret Mitchell. -followed 5 decades later by "Scarlett," a mini-series set in Ireland. -The O'Hara family in the American South struggle during and after the Civil War. The patriarch of the family is Gerald O'Hara of County Meath in Ireland.

"Good Will Hunting" (1997) (rated R) Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Robin Williams, Minnie Driver Dir: Gus Van Sant Written by: Matt Damon & Ben Affleck -Will Hunting, a smart, young Irish-American in Boston gets his head on straight with the aid of an Irish-American psychologist and a foreign student from Britain.

"Goodbye Broadway" (1938: U.S.A.) Alice Brady, Charles Winninger Dir: Ray McCarey -Pat and Molly Molloy, who are veterans of the vaudeville stage, try to settle down when they buy a hotel. Ultimately, they decide that business life is not for them, and they go back on the road.

"Goodfellas" (1990) (146 min) Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci, Lorraine Bracco, Paul Sorvino, Frank Sivero, Tony Darrow, Mike Star, Frank Vincent, Chuck Low, Frank DiLeo, Christopher Serrone, Samuel L. Jackson, Henry Youngman, Jerry Vale Dir: Martin Scorsese -Film is primarily about Italian-American gangsters, but Irish-American gangsters are included in the center of the action.

"Grace Kelly" (1983) (104 min) Cheryl Ladd, Lloyd Bridges, Diane Ladd, Alejandro Rey, Ian McShane Dir: Anthony Page -True tale of a pretty Irish girl from Philadelphia who grows up to be a movie star and a princess.

"The Guttersnipe" (1922: USA) Gladys Walton, Walter Perry Dir: Dallas M. Fitzgerald -Shopclerk Maisie O'Day allows the fantasies that she reads to strongly influence her real life. Living in New York City's Little Ireland, she mistakes a soda jerk, Dennis O'Day, for an English nobleman who she has been reading about. Although he masquerades in a dress suit to win her, he still becomes her boyfriend when she discovers his real identity. When Dennis gets arrested on a charge of counterfeiting, Maggie finds advice in a magazine that helps in capturing the real criminals. Dennis and Maggie then use the reward money to leave Little Ireland.

"Has Anyone Seen Kelly" (1928: U.S.A.) Tom Moore, Bessie Love Dir: William Wyler -When a jealous ex-boyfriend tries to have her deported, immigrant Mitzi Lavelle marries Irish traffic cop Pat Kelly.

"Hell Cat" (1918: U.S.A.) Geraldine Farrar Dir: Reginald Barker -Pancha O'Brien is the daughter of an Irish sheep ranch owner and a Spanish mother. She is in love with Sheriff Jack Webb, and she rejects the attentions of Cattleman Jim Dyke, who subsequently kills her father and kidnaps her. Pancha kills Jim with a dagger and then agrees to marry Jack.

"Hell's Kitchen" (1939) (90 min) Ronald Reagan, Dead End Kids Dir: Lewis Seiler & E. A. Dupont -The boys get involved with blackmail & torture as they try to make things right in the neighborhood.

"His Family Tree" (1935: U.S.A.) James Barton, Herman Bing, Addison Randall Dir: Charles Vidor -When Patrick Murphy arrives in the United States, he finds that his son is running for political office under the name "Murfree" in an effort to hide his Irish roots from the voters. The son's campaign manager and publicist want to hide the father. However, the son loses the Irish vote until the "Murfrees" acknowledge their Irish heritage.

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