Page updated 31/8/2018

Jack and Ralph Plan a Murder (2014) (69 mins) Dark Comedy.

Jeff Doyle, Johnny Elliot, Chris Newman, Aisling Bodkin, Peter Coonan, John Connors, Stephen Clinch, Brian Fortune, Steve Wilson.

Writer/Director: Jeff Doyle.

Micro budget  – €4,000.

Filmed in County Dublin.

Jack (Jeff Doyle) is being bullied in work, so, with a little help from his imaginary friend, Ralph (Johnny Elliott) they begin to plot the murder of his bully, Pat (Chris Newman) all the while trying to woo the office heart-throb Laura (Aisling Bodkin).

Does not appear to have had a DVD release.

“Jack Taylor” (2011-13) (6 x 90 mins) Crime. TV 3 series.

Iain Glen, Killian Scott, Nora-Jane Noone, Paraic Breathnach, Tara Breathnach, Eamonn Draper.

Director: Stuart Orme.

Based on the novels by Ken Bruen.

Filmed on location in Ireland – Galway and Wicklow (Bray) – with interiors shot in studios at Bremen in Germany.

j taylor

Jack (Iain Glen) is an Irish ex-cop, on the wrong side of forty who has become a finder with a sharp tongue and a soft heart. He takes on the cases the Gardai won’t touch, no matter how hopeless. He’s pig stubborn. He defends the lost and the broken. He’s good because he looks where no one else looks, talks to the people no one else talks to. Moreover, he knows every back street in his hometown, Galway, knows the seed and breed of everyone in it. But small towns have big memories, and like Jack, they are quick to anger and slow to forgive.

Series.1. The Guards; The Pikemen; The Magdalen Martyrs; The Dramatist; Priest; Shot Down.

Aired on TV3 in Sept.2011-13.

Available on DVD.

“Jacqueline” (1956) (92 mins) Drama

John Gregson, Kathleen Ryan, Jacqueline Ryan, Noel Purcell, Cyril Cusack, Tony Wright and Maureen Swanson.

Director: Roy Ward Baker.

Based on the novel “A Grand Man” by Catherine Cookson. Screenplay by Liam O’Flaherty & Patrick Kirwan (with additional dialogue by Catherine Cookson & Patrick Campbell).

Filmed in Northern Ireland and England – Pinewood Studios.

The book was set in Tyneside in the North East of England but was adapted for film using the similar socio-economic background of Belfast.

jacqueline poster

In 1950s Belfast, a girl helps her alcoholic father find work.

Not officially released on VHS or DVD.

“Jake’s Progress” (1995) (515 mins) TV mini-series.

Robert Lindsay, Julie Walters, Barclay Wright and Amanda Mealing.

Director: Robin Lefevre.

Written by Alan Bleasdale (Boys from the Black Stuff).

Filmed at Ardmore Studios in Bray and  County Waterford – Dunmore East.

Jakes Progress

Parenthood surprises Jamie (Robert Lindsay) and Julie Diadoni (Julie Walters) late on in life, but son Jake (Barclay Wright) is not born into domestic harmony. Jamie – a handsome failed pop star – loses his job, Julie is forced out to work, and he takes on the role of house husband. Jake grows up loving his father but hating his absent mother. A new pregnancy is the final straw. His misunderstood side manifests itself as he fantasises about pushing his brother off a cliff and attempts to set fire to him. Meanwhile, events take a tragic twist as Jamie has his fortune told and learns he will have an affair – just before he dies. Drawn inexorably towards his fate, he falls in love with mysterious stranger Kate (Amanda Mealing) and embarks on an affair after discovering the prophecy was invented by Julie as a joke. But Julie learns just how dangerous it is to play games with fate….

Available on DVD.

“James Joyce’s Women” (1985) (91 mins) Drama

Fionnula Flanagan, Timothy E. O’Grady, Chris O’Neill.

Director: Michael Pearce.

Written by: Fionnula Flanagan.

James Joyce's Women

The film portrays the lives of female characters from Joyce’s writing as well as women in his real life.

Released on VHS but is now virtually impossible to find and highly expensive! Amazon.com is the best starting point.

“Jimmy Boy” (1935)  (71 mins) Comedy

Jimmy O’Dea, Guy Middleton, Vera Sherborne, Harry O’Donovan, Noel Purcell.

Director: John Baxter.

Jimmy from Bantry Bay is working in London as a supervisor in a film studio, and later as a lift boy in a hotel. While at the hotel he unmasks a foreign film star as a spy who is involved in a plot to blow up London.

Not available.

“Jimmy’s Hall” (2014) (109 mins) Drama

Barry Ward, Simone Kirby, Andrew Scott, Jim Norton, Andrew Scott, Jim Norton, Brían F. O’ Byrne, Francis Magee, Karl Geary.

Director: Ken Loach.

Production companies: Sixteen Films and Element Pictures.

Shot on location in Sligo and Leitrim.

The film was inspired by Donal O’Kelly’s play ‘Jimmy Gralton’s Dancehall’ and based on the life of Jimmy Gralton. Deported in 1933 by de Valera’s Government for his alleged communist sympathies, Jimmy Gralton was politically active during the War of Independence and, in the 1920s, erected a meeting hall on his parents’ land – the ‘Pearse-Connolly Hall in honour of the Socialist and Republican leaders of 1916’. This hall became a focal point for Gralton’s political activities, which provoked the opposition of local clergy, who became determined to have him arrested.

In the years that followed, Gralton became a member of the Revolutionary Workers Group, spoke at anti-eviction meetings and meetings of the National Unemployed Movement. He was a high-profile casualty of the ‘Red Scare’ that swept through Ireland during the January 1933 general election, which resulted in the new Fianna Fáil Government issuing Gralton’s deportation order as ‘an undesirable alien’.

Gralton lived out the rest of his days in the US, joining the American Labour Movement and running as a candidate for the Communist Party in the Borough elections in Manhattan before his death in New York in 1945.

Jimmy's Hall from Magnum Lady's blog

Director, Ken Loach chats to some of the extras during a break in filming on  The Mall in Sligo in September 2013. My thanks to Magnum Lady for permission to use this photograph.

For more pics of shooting in Sligo visit her blog here: Magnum Lady – Jimmy’s Hall 

Reported to be the director’s last feature film.

Available on DVD.

“Johnny Nobody” (1961) (88 mins) Thriller.

Nigel Patrick, Yvonne Mitchell, William Bendix, Aldo Ray, Jimmy O’Dea, Noel Purcell, Cyril Cusack, Eddie Byrne, Joe Lynch, Niall MacGinnis, Berni Winters.

Director: Nigel Patrick.

Filmed in County Dublin – Dublin City, the Harcourt Street railway line (after closure), Mountjoy Jail and County Wicklow – Enniskerry and the Wicklow Mountains.

Johnny Nobody poster

When the drink fueled, atheistic ranting of Irish-American author James Mulcahy (William Bendix) upsets the inhabitants of the Irish village to which he has retired, a mob threatens him. But moments after he has publicly dared God to strike him dead, a stranger appears and shoots him. The man (Aldo Ray), dubbed “Johnny Nobody” by the press, claims no knowledge of Mulcahy, or even of himself, but that God told him to kill the blasphemer. He asks the help of the village priest, Father Carey (Nigel Patrick), in his upcoming trial for Mulcahy’s murder. While the amnesiac Johnny awaits his trial, Father Carey mulls questions of belief raised by the case. And then, the good father learns a little more about Johnny Nobody.

Was released on VHS (Monterey Home Video) but now ultra-rare.

Unofficial DVD copies on eBay in 2018.

“Johnny Was” (2006) (93 mins) Thriller.

Vinnie Jones, Patrick Bergin, Lennox Lewis, Samantha Mumba, Eriq la Salle, Roger Daltrey.

Director: Mark Hammond.

Filmed in Belfast and Brixton.

Johnny Was

Johnny (Vinnie Jones), trying to escape from a violent past in Ireland, lies low in Brixton, London, in the world’s least-safe safe house, sandwiched between a drug den run by a Jamaican gangster Julius (Eriq La Salle) and a pirate radio station belonging to a Rasta DJ (Lennox Lewis). When Johnny’s former comrade Flynn (Patrick Bergin) escapes from Brixton Prison determined to derail the Irish peace process, Johnny faces being dragged back into violence and away from his new love Rita (Samantha Mumba) – Julius’ girl.

Available on DVD.

“Johnstown Monster, The” (1971) (54 mins) Childrens’ Adventure Movie.

Connor Brennan (Dominic), Simon Tully (Jock), Rory Baily (Brendan), Kim McDonald (Jenny), Amanda Jane Tully (Oonagh), Seamus Kelly (Jon), Dermot Ryan (Gareth), Eamon Keane (Minnit), Michael Goodliffe (McNeil), Gerry Alexander (Slattery), Joan O’Hara (Mrs Slattery), Moynagh Lee (Mrs Hamer), Derek Farr (Hamer).

Director: Olaf Pooley.

Production company: Sebastian Productions Ltd; Children’s Film Foundation Ltd.

Filmed in Ireland – Lough Derg.

A snippet from YouTube to whet your appetite for the search!

Young Jock and his sister Jenny are on holiday with their father at a lake near the Irish village of Johnstown. They are invited to dinner by Slattery who tells them about the legend of the Johnstown monster, Slattery’s sons Dominic and Jon take out the boat at night to set lines for eels. A storm blows up while they are on the lake and Jock falls overboard and has to be rescued. Underwater, he sees the monster, but jokes about it. After Jock develops a photograph he has taken of the lake he notices a faint image of the monster. Locals are sceptical about the photograph’s authenticity. Jock decides to build a monster as a means of attracting tourists, and thus prosperity, to the area. Their hoax monster proves a success, but American tourist Hamer employs two boys to help expose what he regards as a deception.

A charming tale, beautifully shot and worth tracking down a copy. A serious trawl of the internet may result in success  – it worked for me!

Not released on VHS or DVD.

“Journey, The” (2016) (94 mins) True Drama.

Timothy Spall, Colm Meaney, Toby Stephens, Freddie Highmore, John Hurt and Ian Beattie.

Director: Nick Hamm.

Writer: Colin Bateman

Filmed in Northern Ireland:

County Antrim – Belfast; Cairndhu Golf Club; Ballyboley Forest, Larne; Portavogie Harbour; and County Down.

A fictional account of the extraordinary story of two implacable enemies in Northern Ireland – firebrand Democratic Unionist Party leader the Rev. Ian Paisley (Timothy Spall) and former IRA leader & Sinn Fein politician Martin McGuinness (Colm Meaney) – who are forced to take a short journey together in which they will take the biggest leap of faith and change the course of Irish history.

In cinemas from the 5th May, 2017.

Available on DVD.

“Journey to Knock” (1991) (105 mins) Drama. BBC TV.

John Hurt, David Thewlis, Charles Simon and Geraldine Plunkett.

Journey to Knock follows three disabled men on their pilgrimage from the North of England to Knock shrine in Co. Mayo.

Released on VHS and DVD.

“Joyce in June” (1982) BBC TV movie.

Stephen Rea, Gabriel Byrne, Bridget de Courcy, Kilian McKenna.

Director: Donald McWhinnie.

Written by Stewart Parker to celebrate the centenary of James Joyce’s birth. It takes the viewer on a journey into the imagined world of Joyce’s mind while he was creating Ulysses.

Further information would be welcome!

“Joyriders” (1988) (96 mins) Drama.

Patricia Kerrigan, Andrew Connolly, Billie Whitelaw, David Kelly Jim Bartley, John Kavanagh and Deirdre Donoghue.

Director: Aisling Walsh.

When Mary (Patricia Kerrigan) flees her violent husband, she is left with nothing and nowhere to go. Forced to abandon her two young daughters, she is alone – penniless and hopeless. Then she meets Perky Rice (Andrew Connolly), a “joyrider” and the couple take off together to the countryside. As they struggle to forget their painful pasts, a fragile love affair begins.

Joy Riders VHS

Was released on VHS (see above) but now extremely hard to find – eBay the best place to look.

“Jump” (2012) (84 mins) Drama.

Nichola Burley, Martin McCann and Charlene McKenna,Ciaran McMenamin, Richard Dormer and Valene Kane.

Director: Kieron J. Walsh.

Filmed in Northern Ireland – Belfast and Derry.


Jump follows the lives of four twenty-somethings whose lives collide one fateful New Year’s Eve amidst the ancient walls of Derry, in a night of fast talk, accidents and intrigue. Johnny, a small-time crook and Marie, a dissatisfied shop assistant are both looking for a fresh start. Greta is on the verge of taking her own life and Pearse has a bounty on his head for asking difficult questions about his missing brother Eddie.

Available on DVD.

“Juno and the Paycock” (1930) (96 mins) Drama. aka “The Shame of Mary Boyle”.

Sara Allgood, Edward Chapman, Barry FitzGerald, John Longden, Sidney Norgan, Maire O’Neill, John Laurie, Dennis Wyndham and Kathleen O’Regan.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock.

Based on the 1924 play by Sean O’Casey and adapted by Alfred Hitchcock.

Seized and burnt by a crowd at its first screening in Ireland.

Barry Fitzgerald had his screen debut as the “Orator”.

Shot at Elstree Studios, Hertfordshire, England.

juno and the paycock

In this, the second part of O’Casey’s great Dublin Trilogy, the ambitions of the Boyle family are set against the political and social events of the Irish Civil War in 1922. Set in a tenement house, Juno and the Paycock is an epic tale of survival and vengeance punctuated by dreadful poverty.

Juno, the spirited matriarch of the Boyle household tries to keep her family together while it is being pulled apart by growing political unrest. Her husband, Captain Jack Boyle drinks his way through his days with his side-kick Joxer Daly while their children fail tragically in their own search for a better life.

When the family learn of an inheritance from a distant relative, it seems that all their problems will be solved, but will they manage to transcend the events that conspire to keep them in their place? Abbey Theatre synopsis.

Available on VHS and DVD.

“Just Another Saturday”  (1975) (77 mins) Drama. BBC “Play for Today”.

John Morrison, Eileen McCallum, Bill Henderson, Ken Hutchison, Billy Connolly.

Director: John MacKenzie.

Set in Glasgow during the Orange Walk parade. John McNeil (John Morrison) is a young man who is gradually coming to terms with the violent and unpleasant truth behind the marching and symbolic pageantry.

Available on DVD (2006).


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