Director: JOHN FORD

66 minutes, U.S.A., 1926, Black and White, Digi-beta

Already in his first big production, 1924’s The Iron Horse, Ford had foregrounded the role of Irish immigrants in constructing the trans-continental railway. His main Irishman there was played by J. Farrell Macdonald, whose prolific career playing Irishmen in Ford films extends as far as a key role as barman/musician in My Darling Clementine (1945). Macdonald features in The Shamrock Handicap as loyal servant of an Irish landowner who falls on hard times. The main story is simple: the landowner is driven to sell his horses to America, along with a jockey, whom his left-behind daughter loves. Father and daughter subsequently travel to America to witness the big race, with results that are no less enjoyable for being predictable. The Variety review noted that “Ford loves anything Irish, and he made the most of the little human interest touches.”

The IFI is pleased to welcome Tony Tracy (NUI Galway) who will introduce this screening and pianist Morgan Cooke who will provide musical accompaniment.

 Showing as part of the IFI’s Season of John Ford’s Irish Films.

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