Dancing at Lughnasa (1998)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Irish director Pat O'Connor helmed this adaptation of Brian Friel's 1990 play which won three Tony awards in addition to UK Olivier and Evening Standard awards. Friel's portrait of five Irish sisters takes place in 1936 on a Donegal farm. The unmarried Mundy sisters are barely surviving. Middle-aged schoolteacher Kate (Meryl Streep) is the eldest, overseeing pretty Christina (Catherine McCormack), lively Maggie (Kathy Burke, re-creating her Tony award-winning role), reliable Agnes (Brid … More

Rating: PG (for mild language and thematic elements)
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Frank McGuinness
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jun 15, 1999
Sony Pictures Classics


as Kate Mundy

as Father Jack Mundy

as Christina Mundy

as Maggie Mundy

as Rose Mundy

as Agnes Mundy

as Gerry Evans

as Michael Mundy

as Danny Bradley

as Austin Morgan

as Sophie McLoughlin

as Vera McLoughlin

as Father Carlin

as Chemist
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Dancing at Lughnasa

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Critic Reviews for Dancing at Lughnasa

All Critics (49) | Top Critics (14)

Full Review… | September 7, 2011
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

Full Review… | March 19, 2002
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

Soapy melodrama masquerading as high art.

Full Review… | January 12, 2007

so beautifully captures the details of its time and place and its characters' lives that it's difficult to resist being drawn in.

Full Review… | June 23, 2002
Kalamazoo Gazette

A meditative film that lyrically affirms the small acts of love, courage, and kindness that knit a family together in the face of hardship and change.

Full Review… | March 3, 2002
Spirituality and Practice

A deftly structured memory piece as beautifully sad as it is charming.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Film Journal International

Audience Reviews for Dancing at Lughnasa


A strong cast and a a sweet story about sisters in a small Irish town.

Sunil Jawahir

Super Reviewer


Where is the plot? Out of curiousity I would like to know if there was actually a plot. I saw some interesting and well-done characters, but I never saw them do much of anything, and nothing ever happened. I am thus led to the conclusion that these actors were paid to make characters and talk, but there was never a script written for them to know what to do in a scene. I'm sorry to those of you that liked the movie, but I couldn't find a purpose or a reason to make this film.

Liz <3 Movies

Super Reviewer


Meryl Streep is in it. You know it has been chosen for its value. 1936 in Ireland for 5 unmarried sisters will not be a comedy. There is pain and fear and confusion and laughter and love; all the normal stuff. One sister thinking she is responsible for everyone (it's 1936) and four sisters trying to find some degree of independence and happiness. There are real people in this movie. It is truly worth wtching.

Glen Shrope

Dancing at Lughnasa Quotes

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