Celebrate Halloween with 10 great Irish horror movies - SEE PHOTOS
In 1992, legendary director Francis Ford Coppola finally brought an accurate version of Irishman Bram Stoker’s masterpiece “Dracula” to the silver screen.
Dubliner Stoker wrote the classic novel in 1897, introducing the world to the now iconic conception of the modern day vampire, and Coppola helped solidify that image with his film (though he certainly made the repressed Victorian sexuality within the novel a bit more overt).
The horror movie, starring Gary Oldman as Dracula, Winona Ryder as Mina Harker and Keanu Reeves as Jonathan Harker, was a huge hit, and some even consider it to be one of the best films of the 1990s.
Coppola – you owe it to Bram!
Coppola incorporated the Irish in one of his earlier horror movies as well – “Dementia 13.”
The film, which was the director/writer’s first mainstream film, was shot in Ireland in 1963.
The thriller tells the story of a woman named Louise whose Irish-American husband dies. Louise wants in on her wealthy Irish mother-in-law’s will, so comes up with a scheme to get the cash. Her plan involves traveling to Ireland to visit her late husband’s family castle.
Her scheming ways are interrupted, however, when a maniac begins murdering members of the family.
“Dementia 13” got mediocre reviews, but most critics agreed: the Irish setting made the movie.
“The Company of Wolves”
Back to some great Irish direction – Neil Jordan had a great pseudo-horror film back in 1984 called “The Company of Wolves.”
In the movie, which is made up of several gothic tales, Jordan tackles werewolves and their sexual connotation.
Angela Lansbury stars as Granny, who tells her granddaughter Rosaleen stories about innocent girls falling for handsome strangers with heavy brows, and then suddenly disappearing when the moon is full. Naturally, Little Red Riding Hood pops up in one of the stories, with Granny being eaten by the wolf.
Nobody tells folkloric tales better than the Irish!
“Darby O’Gill and the Little People”
No, this classic Irish Disney film isn’t traditionally classified as “horror,” but its banshee scenes make it a contender in the Irish scary movie contest!
The 1959 adventure film set in Ireland starred Sean Connery (and his awful Irish accent) as the hero Michael McBride.
Darby O’Gill is an elderly storyteller who tells tales about leprechauns and banshees to locals at the pub.
The Ireland of this film is actually enchanced, so Darby has many a run-in with leprechauns like the 21-inch King Brian.
The horror comes into play when the banshee shows up, heralding the death of Darby’s daughter (and Michael McBride’s love interest), Katie.
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