Wild Mountain Thyme will now be released in Ireland on April 30th. Brace yourself

About-turn means we can watch Jamie Dornan’s ironic paddywhackery over the bank holiday

Official trailer for John Patrick Shanley's Wild Mountain Thyme, starring Emily Blunt, Jamie Dornan, Jon Hamm and Christopher Walken.

 

John Patrick Shanley’s Wild Mountain Thyme, the much-discussed Irish romance starring Jamie Dornan and Emily Blunt, will, after all, be available to rent in both Ireland and the UK from April 30th.

Earlier this week the distributor said that the film would be accessible in the UK from that date but that, in the Republic of Ireland, it would be held back for a theatrical release. It seemed we would be denied an evening of ironic paddywhackery over the bank-holiday weekend.

An email on Thursday morning clarified: “Given the recent uncertainly about vaccine roll out and no confirmation of when cinemas will reopen, Lionsgate have decided to release Wild Mountain Thyme on PVOD” – premium video on demand – “in Ireland at the same time as the UK.”

Conspiracies theories greeted the earlier suggestion that, most unusually, the film would be denied to Irish viewers on the day of its UK release.

Such was the aghast hilarity – sometimes bleeding into naked anger – at the stage-Irishness of the trailer that, when the film opened in the United States, before Christmas, many American reviews referred to the response in Ireland.

David Rooney’s comments in the Hollywood Reporter were typical: “Derisive reaction to the film’s trailer in the Emerald Isle suggests it’s less likely to be remembered alongside The Quiet Man than Far and Away, the 1992 Hollywoodized Oirish epic with Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman.”

Shanley was dismissive of the blowback. “I told Emily when we first talked about this project, ‘I’m not making this movie for the Irish. If you try to get the Irish to love you, no good will come of it,’” he told Variety. The suggestions on social media that the distributors were seeking to hide the film, which received largely negative notices in the US, from Irish audiences can now be dismissed.

“Wild Mountain captures the romance, lyricism and transcendent beauty of the Irish countryside in an extraordinary love story between two lonely souls,” the press release continued.

We will soon be able to decide for ourselves.

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