Black Irish
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A young man struggles to grow up with principles as his family begins to self-destruct around him in this coming of age drama. Cole McKay (Michael Angarano) is a boy in his middle-teens growing up in an Irish-Catholic family in Boston. While Cole has dreams of playing major league baseball some day, his parents Desmond (Brendan Gleeson) and Margaret (Melissa Leo) are blind to his ambitions, and his older brother Terry (Tom Guiry) is a petty criminal who is unwittingly drawing Cole into his orbit. While Margaret is obsessed with projecting an image that the McKay family are happy and… More
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 31%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"While the film has many well-observed moments...it ultimately suffers from its relentless piling on of crises."
‑ Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter
"It's too sincere and thoughtful to be immediately dismissed. But it is terribly frustrating viewing: so much time and creative energy spent making a movie that, in one form or another, the audience has already seen."
‑ Tim Grierson, L.A. Weekly
"The problem with Black Irish is that, like those photos shifted to cover the holes, not everything is hanging in quite the right place here."
‑ Chad Greene, Boxoffice Magazine
"The difficulties of coming-of-age in an Irish-American family with a violent older brother and a self-destructive father."
‑ Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Spirituality and Practice
"Black Irish boasts many memorable scenes and fine characterizations but ultimately plays more like a series of snapshots come to life than as an organically satisfying story."
‑ , Los Angeles Times
"Could almost be labeled a Gaelic minstrel show, so riddled is it with every conceivable cliché and stereotype ever associated with the sons of Eire."
‑ David Noh, Film Journal International
"Gleeson inhabits the character in such a way that one cannot help but wonder how many Irish fathers like this he has personally known."
‑ Richard Horgan, FilmStew.com
"Writer-director-producer Brad Gann's tale of growing up in blue-collar South Boston features a strong central performance, but it doesn't miss a cliche of hardscrabble adolescence."
‑ Maitland McDonagh, TV Guide's Movie Guide
"A small-bore Southie coming-of-age drama whose heart is just a bit bigger than its cliches."
‑ Ty Burr, Boston Globe
"It'll be worth watching to see if [director Brad Gann] plays to his strengths on future projects."
‑ Geoff Berkshire, Metromix.com
"A drismal drama rather reminiscent of Angela's Ashes, especially in terms of maintaining a relentlessly pessimistic and morose tone."
‑ Kam Williams, Leader Newspapers, New Jersey
"The blarney isn't the only thing that's thick in writer-director Brad Gann's Black Irish."
‑ Ed Gonzalez, Slant Magazine
More reviews for Black Irish on Rotten Tomatoes