White Irish Drinkers (2011) - Rotten Tomatoes

White Irish Drinkers (2011)

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Movie Info

Two young men are looking for a better life but may have to go to the wrong side of the law to get it in this independent drama from director John Gray. Brian Leary (Nick Thurston) and Danny (Geoff Wigdor) are brothers living in a decaying Brooklyn neighborhood in 1975. Tired of dealing with their angry and abusive father (Stephen Lang) and high-strung mother (Karen Allen), both Brian and Danny want to move out and do something different with their lives, but their ambitions travel different paths. Danny, the older brother, is a petty criminal who is trying to finance a new life one hold-up at a time; Brian, meanwhile, works at a movie theater and paints in his spare time, though he doesn't tell anyone about his dreams of becoming an artist. Brian thinks he might be able to bankroll a few years at art school when Whitey (Peter Riegert), the manager of the theater, tells him they have a shot at booking the Rolling Stones for a special show at the theater, which would mean a big payday for everyone. But when Danny hears about the big show, he starts making plans of his own to rob the box office the night of the concert. White Irish Drinkers received its world premiere at the 2010 Toronto International Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

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Cast

Karen Allen
as Margaret
Stephen Lang
as Patrick
Ken Jennings
as Jimmy Cheeks
Regan Mizrahi
as Little Brian
Anthony Amorlm
as Little Danny
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Critic Reviews for White Irish Drinkers

All Critics (34) | Top Critics (16)

Every kitchen-sink dramatic cliché is trotted out in John Gray's Brooklyn period piece.

April 28, 2011 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

A movie that one watches with the sense of pushing it up a hill.

April 21, 2011 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Despite the cliches that push every scene forward, there's an unexpected appeal to John Gray's modest drama, emanating from its center.

March 25, 2011 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

The basic outline of the plot, built around a promised local concert by the Rolling Stones - well, if you don't know where that story is headed, you haven't seen as many movies as I think you have.

March 25, 2011 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Writer-director John Gray digs into his own background to create the ardent and atmospheric White Irish Drinkers. The close, cramped intimacy of this film is so real it stings.

March 25, 2011 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

White Irish Drinkers is a heavy borrower deep into the pocket of pop culture's loan shark, and lacking the grace to acknowledge the debt.

March 25, 2011 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for White Irish Drinkers

While Brian(Nick Thurston) does not mind accompanying his older brother Danny(Geoffrey Wigdor) on his jewlery robberies, he does draw the line at holding onto a gun for him. Otherwise, Brian uses art to distract himself from his abusive father(Stephen Lang) and his mother's(Karen Allen) idiosyncratic cooking and to meet women like Shauna(Leslie Murphy). For money, Brian works part-time at the moribund Lafayette Theatre where its owner Whitey(Peter Riegert) has just landed the Rolling Stones for a one hour concert which may yet save things. "White Irish Drinkers" is what we mean when we call a movie a mixed bag. On the one hand, you could occupy yourself by playing spot a cliche like brothers heading in opposite directions and incredibly prescient characters in a period piece.(However, one prediction turned out to be wrong since the movie was made.) In other ways, the movie takes full advantage of its time and place, like remembering old movie palaces in a time when New York City, not only Brooklyn, was going to the dogs, forcing many characters to choose between security and any dreams they might have.(What are the chances somebody would be reading the Daily News with the legendary cover, "Ford to NYC: Drop Dead?") To be honest, even if the movie had stopped after Brian's window painting, I would have recommended it, even without all the other cool moments. Plus, everything does neatly dovetail right at the end, rather unexpectedly. That's not to mention the fine work by the young cast, nor my eternal soft spot for Karen Allen.

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

½

In Brooklyn in the 70's there's only 2 kinds of people: those stuck there in lower middle class doldrums or those who get out. Although cliched the performances save this trifle about two brothers (one's a crook and one ain't). Stephen Lang does well as the bad parent.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

½

Excellent movie! Refreshing script, excellent acting. I really liked the pace of this movie, and the subtle camera work. Fantastic ending, also, which often seals the deal for me when it come to really good movies. Kudos!

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

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