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The Best Movies Set In Ireland

The Best Movies Set In Ireland

Ella Morley

There is nothing like watching a film and recognising the locations in Ireland from where a movie takes place. It is a wonderful feeling to recognise the location and you are suddenly proud to be a native and happy to tell people that you are Irish.

Here are some of the best movies set in Ireland…

Movies Set In Ireland

The Young Offenders

The Young Offenders first came to the big screen in 2016. This hilarious film tells the story of two teenage boys – Conor and Jock. The two best friends decide to travel to the coast in West Cork on stolen bikes in the hope of retrieving a bale of cocaine. Influenced by Ireland’s largest cocaine seizure, this film is definitely a favourite amongst the Irish. Winning many awards, the movie shows some of Cork’s best spots such as the English Market and Shandon Bells in an admirable light.

Sing Street

Sing Street is another must watch comedy set in Ireland that came out in 2016. It tells the story of 15-year-old Conor Lalor who puts together a band to impress his crush Raphina. This beautiful coming-of-age film has been nominated and won awards across the globe. The movie takes place and is filmed in Dublin.

Many people will recognise locations used in the film such as St Catherine’s Park, 8 Thomas Street, The Liberties and Dalkey Island.


If you love romantic, period dramas than this 2015 award-winning film is right up your street. Brooklyn recounts the tale of Eilis Lace migrating from Enniscorthy, County Wexford to Brooklyn, New York in the 1950s in search of a better life. Upon needing to return to Ireland she finds herself caught between two different countries and therefore must choose between the lives they offer her.

Those living in Ireland may recognise different filming locations from the movie located in Wexford such as St Aidan’s Cathedral and Curracloe Beach.

Handsome Devil

2016 was certainly a good year for comedies. Handsome Devil was set in Ireland. The boarding school that the boys attended was filmed in Castleknock College Dublin, a location which may spark a few memories of days past or present for those that have left and for those that still attend.

This LGBTQ+ award-winning film features two opposites forming an unlikely friendship as they are forced to share a room together.


A heart-wrenching drama based on true events, this 2013 film with four Oscar nominations, claimed victory at the David di Donatello Awards for Best European Film and follows Philomena as she searches for her son. She had been sent to a convent for being pregnant out of wedlock and when her baby was born, she was forced to give him up. Fifty years later, accompanied by a journalist they travel to America in the hopes of finding her son.

Familiar shots of Bryansford, Killyleagh and Rostrevor all in County Down are captured in this beautiful film.

Dating Amber

Dating Amber is one of the most recent movies set in Ireland to be released. Two school friends decide to start a pretend straight relationship in an effort to fit in. Dating Amber explores what it was like to be a gay teenager in Ireland in the mid-90s. So, if you love Derry Girls and It’s A Sin, this is a perfect watch for you as it has that nostalgia factor but focuses on finding your own way and friendship.

Dating Amber is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.


A woman, her husband and their four children find themselves homeless after their landlord sells their house. Over the next 36 hours, the couple desperately search for a place to live while trying to shield the kids from the reality of the situation.

See Also

Tackling the current homeless crisis in Ireland, specifically in the capital city of Dublin, Rosie is as relevant and timely a film as you’re ever likely to see.

Circle of Friends

A classic Irish movie if ever there was one, Circle of Friends is based on the iconic novel by Maeve Binchy. Set in 1950s Ireland, the film relates the experiences of Bernadette “Benny” Hogan and her friends: Eve Malone and Nan Mahon.

Many other movies have been filmed in Ireland to the extent that there are bus tours that will take you to visit some of the most iconic locations as shown in these films and series such as Star Wars, Game of Thrones, Braveheart and Ella Enchanted to name just a few. Ireland definitely is a favourite with movie location scouts and is often an underrated star of the films we enjoy.

The Banshees of Inisherin

You’d have to be living under a rock to not have heard the hype around The Banshees over the past few months. It’s a bit divisive with people, but it’s one of those movies that has a surprising amount of layers to it. It really does showcase the beauty of Ireland in its sweeping shots.

On a remote island off the coast of Ireland, Pádraic is devastated when his buddy Colm suddenly puts an end to their lifelong friendship. With help from his sister and a troubled young islander, Pádraic sets out to repair the damaged relationship by any means necessary. However, as Colm’s resolve only strengthens, he soon delivers an ultimatum that leads to shocking consequences.

What are your favourite movies set in Ireland?

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