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Quiet Man, The

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of its release, the Irish Film Archive is pleased to present a special screening of John Ford’s Oirish classic. This showing also coincides with the launch of the latest title in the ‘Ireland into Film’ series of books published by the Film Institute and Cork University Press.
Ford’s film is the most popular cinematic representation of Ireland, and one of Hollywood’s classic romantic comedies. John Wayne stars as the immigrant boxer who returns from America to Galway, where he becomes involved in a Taming of the Shrew courtship of flame-haired Maureen O’Hara, and a marathon battle with her truculent brother (Victor McLaglen). For some viewers and critics the film is a powerful evocation of romantic Ireland and the search for home; for others, it is a showcase for the worst stereotypes of stage-Irishness. In a radical reappraisal of Ford’s Oscar-winning film, author Luke Gibbons traces its development from Maurice Walsh’s original story (1933) and argues that its romantic excesses are a symptom of much darker undercurrents in the literary text. Moreover, Gibbons ably demonstrates how the film actually questions its own romantic illusions and the dream of returning to an Irish paradise lost.
U.S.A., 1952. Colour. 129 mins.

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