From the moment the sun rose on January 1st, 2009, the Irish Film Institute was celebrating the coming of a new millennium.
With an extra day of daylight, the sun came out, the country lit up, and we watched The Irish Film.
We were all very excited.
But, there was one film we didn’t want to see.
It was called The Irish Horror.
I remember walking down the street with my dad one morning, when we realised that the cinema screen had been changed and the screen had become a horror film.
We were all staring at a poster for the film.
“A horror film?” my dad said, looking at the film poster.
“Yes, this is The Irish Movie.”
“What is that?”
“This is the Irish Horror.”
I was just a little bit stunned.
In the late 70s, horror was not a new genre to Ireland.
It had been around for a while, but this was the first film that had really captured our attention.
A movie about a group of friends in an Irish pub, The Irish Mystery, had just opened in 1972.
The film was about a teenage girl who is abducted by her boyfriend and is sent back to the country.
The girl is left with her two friends in a house, where they are playing a game.
They all become lost.
The first film I ever saw was The Irish Scare.
Then came The Irish Nightmare.
This was the film that got me into horror.
I remember my dad saying to me, “What’s wrong with this?”
We never went back to see The Irish Halloween.
However, in 2008, we saw The Irish Hunt, a film about the hunt for a young girl who has been abducted.
So, the first Irish Horror film was one that we were all intrigued by.
When I read the synopsis of The Irish Hunting, I was surprised.
What’s in it?
It’s a dark story about two sisters, who decide to go hunting in Ireland for the daughter they never got.
They come across a girl who was abducted, and the hunt begins.
For the first time, I saw the trailer of The Australian Horror.
At the time, The Australian had been released, and it was one of the films that I thought was my favourite.
But, as the year went on, I realised that it was not The Irish Monster that was the best Irish film.
What’s different this time around?
The films are all made from the same set of ideas, the same story, the story of a family in a family of four.
All the characters are all Irish, all the scenes are set in Ireland, and there’s not a single Irish actor in it.
That’s what makes the Irish films so special.
And I am excited to see what happens next. Read more The Irish Film Centre has released their annual list of the Top 100 Irish Films of All Time.