Even if you don't speak Irish, you probably have a good idea what that means. ;) In the U.S., it's the day of awful green beer and several thousand drunken frat boys crowding the streets. So...not really my holiday. If it's yours, then good on you. Be safe. Take a cab or public transportation. If it's not yours and you're out on the road, please be safe too. Nonetheless, I do tend to drag out the Irish films and maybe a tiny bit of Irish whiskey at home because...well...I happen to like it.
Anyway, let's talk Irish and Irish-themed media. Shall we? First up, The Quiet Man.
Know this going in: the film has some issues around women's rights, domestic abuse, and well...the stereotypical violence and alcoholism pinned on the Irish since forever, but other than that...it's a pretty good film. My favorite part of it has always been the struggle between the choice of non-violence and violence. Mind you, I'm not happy that violence is seen as the answer, but I am happy that at least the argument against violence is presented. Yes, this film is John Ford's love letter to the "old country." (Personally, my experience of Ireland was that it wasn't anything like that green, but I was there in the early spring and the island still had its winter on.) It just goes to show you how much one can internalize oppression even when you're the oppressed. My favorite character is Mary Kate, of course. Well, obviously.
The Secret of Roan Inish has become my favorite Irish-themed film.
And another gorgeous film is Ondine.
I really love that one. The Magical Realism elements plus the mystery...great stuff.
And now...we venture into the political: The Wind That Shakes The Barley.
It's hard to watch at times, but it's a great film. Another great one in this category is In the Name of the Father.
If you get the idea that there's a lot to these films that are pertinent to what is happening in America right now, you'd be right. Particularly the next film, Hunger.
And one more political film before I steer us into happier territory: Bloody Sunday.
I will add here that atrocities were committed on both sides of that war. It's what war does to people, no matter their cause. War is never a simple Good vs Bad equation. It's not a game of Moral vs Evil. People who view war that way are prone to committing atrocity. War is a complete breakdown of civilization. It always results in the negative. That is why it should be avoided as much as humanly possible. Nonetheless, the British lied about Bloody Sunday, and in my opinion, Margaret Thatcher was straight up evil.
Now, to more positive things, the animation category. The Secret of Kells.
Okay. So, I have a thing for selkie stories. You should probably know that about me. ;) Thus, the very last one is, of course, a selkie story. The Song of the Sea.
 As stated so many times before, I'm not Irish. (That is, I don't live in Ireland nor am I from Ireland.) I don't even count myself American-Irish even though the "English" side of the family is Irish as I now understand it. (Long story. Oh, family "dirty secrets".) Americans are an amalgamation of all sorts of cultures. This is a good thing. I'm not hung up on which comprise my background. I find that kind of thing disturbing because it tends to go places with which I strongly disagree. Racist places.
 I named a character after Mary Kate, after all.
 "We're not taking milk away from hungry children. We're giving them the opportunity to pay for the milk." -- Margaret Thatcher on the cancelling of the school milk program for poor children. If you can read that and not think about the recent Republican proposal regarding cancelling government programs (particularly Meals on Wheels) then I don't know what to say. Margaret Thatcher was not a Feminist hero. She wasn't even a Feminist. She was an active collaborator with the system of oppression in every way.