She has a boite that shtings! The 7 Worst Fake Irish Accents in Movies


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This St. Patrick’s Day will be filled with the usual Oirish nonsense. Sometimes it’s hard to escape it – especially at the movies.

Over the years Hollywood has foisted quite a few shamrock-filled leprechaunish moments on us.

Here are some of the most ridiculous fake Irish accents ever.

Julia Roberts: Mary Reilly

Roberts tops the list because she’s been Oirish on two occasions, in Mary Reilly and Michael Collins, and both times she sounded like someone whose idea of an Irish accent came from watching a third-rate amateur theatrical company put on a fourth-rate production of Playboy of the Western World. In South Africa.

Gerard Butler: P.S. I Love You

At least he had the decency to apologize for it.

Russell Crowe: Winter’s Tale

Oh dear. Couldn’t Colin Farrell have taken him aside on the set and had a quiet word with him?

Tom Cruise: Far and Away

To be fair to the Cruiser, Nicole Kidman’s accent isn’t much better, but then again, she’s a corker!

Jeffrey Dean Morgan: P.S. I Love You

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I once met a woman who was convinced he’s Irish. She was devastated when I told her he’s about as Irish as this guy. I couldn’t actually find a clip from the film with him; perhaps that’s a blessing.

Tommy Lee Jones: Blown Away

You’ll be blown away by how bad this is.

Matthew Goode: Leap Year

If you’re lucky you’ll only have to watch this every four years. Or never.

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20 thoughts on “She has a boite that shtings! The 7 Worst Fake Irish Accents in Movies

  1. Tom Cruise is my favourite. My Da told me that they filmed part of Far and Away near Sheriff Street, where he worked in the delivery office. They were all hanging out of the windows shouting at him and whistling at Nicole. “Go on Tom! Give her one!” He says they had to stop filming at one stage and ask the managers to close all the windows on the second floor. 😀

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    1. you have to wonder if he came back to ireland now to make a film what sort of reaction there’d be. mind you, didn’t they give him one of those certs of irish heritage a couple of years ago?

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      1. Did they? They probably did, that wouldn’t surprise me at all. I’d imagine the reaction would depend on where he was filming. Inner-city Dubs tend to treat everyone the same, even those famous people, because you know, they’re no different to anyone else in their minds. Meaning, ripe for the slagging and if you need to be taken down a peg or two, it’ll happen. Was far from mansions in Los Angle-ees you were rared, Mr. Cruise.

        Wonder what the reaction to the Scientology malark would be like? That reminds me of the time when the old man was walking by the institute on Abbey St., and some poor unfortunate asks him, “Could I interest you in a free personality test, sir?” To which he replies, “You might do, if I had a personality.” And on he walks. I’m not sure where he gets half of this stuff from, but one day I’ll write a book about him. 😀

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  2. I’m U.S. borne and bred but, when I was a lad, my Gram McGurk raised me. She came across from Ireland in the early 1900’s when she was only twelve. Well, having spent most of my early years tugging on her apron strings, when I went to school I found myself in speech class for the first three years. They wanted to rid me of my Irish accent ya see.

    I remember one particularly contentious exchange when the therapist told me that I had to start calling food and other things by their proper names. My response was a bit less cordial that she expected. If memory serves, I said, “Woman, if I want to call it a pratie instead of a POTATO, than I will and there’s ne’re a thing you can do to stop me.” That wasn’t exactly an accurate statement. She had quite an arsenal of weapons at her disposal. It was shortly after that I decided to become an engineer. I simply had to find out why drilling holes in the paddle made it hurt so much more. Jaysis, that damn thing stung.

    Someday, I’m going to visit that beautiful island. When I do, I’m going to look up my irreverent friend V and, over a pint of her favorite ale, I’m going to try to recover the accent that they ripped from my soul over five decades ago. If I’m successful, the bastards are never going to take it again.

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  3. Ohhhh dear. It’s funny how Hollywood butchers accents so badly and thinks it’s fine. I’m thinking of Audrey Hepburn butchering Cockney in My Fair Lady =P Or pretty much every single American actor playing an Australian!
    Tom Cruise was extremely fiddly with his damn hats.

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  4. I was glad to see Dick V-D mentioned. I agree that the Irish accent has had a bashing over the years (Tommy Lee Jones!) but the English accent has been attacked from all sides for almost a century. My awards for the best efforts from Americans playing ‘English’ go to Renee Zellweger in ‘Bridget Jones’, and Gillian Anderson in anything.
    Cheers Niall. Pete.

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    1. indeed. not sure why don cheadle chose to be a cockney in the ocean’s movies, for instance. agree about anderson; i was just watching Siesta (ellen barkin) and there’s a young jodie foster doing a very good (to my ears) clipped, posh english accent

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