Sunday, March 17, 2013

TRUE GREEN, an Irish Western! by MEG MIMS

Faith and Begorrah! It's an Irish Western!
Well, perhaps that's a bit of a stretch. But The Quiet Man *IS* set in the north and west of the Emerald Isle. It has *the Duke* -- a famous Western cowboy movie star! It has *horses* and a *horse race*! It has romance and *Maureen O'Hara*, who also starred as the Duke's wife in several other great westerns! It has a *great fight*! And not just between the Duke and his brother-in-law, either. Duke and Mo "duke it out" too.
In fact, I would have named this movie TRUE GREEN ... for the bits of real Irish language, Irish-born actors, and lush setting. The Quiet Man was filmed in Ireland for the most part. And it's a lot like the westerns we know and love -- an old-fashioned, men-were-men, women-were-women-and-belonged-in-the-home style of story.
It has a "fish out of water" plot, which allows the Duke to learn the local ways after breaking the rules, and then learn that following the rules doesn't always bring him what he expects either. "Mo" gets to show off her own Irish roots and portray a loving woman, yet fierce in the battle to uphold her dignity and pride in what she deserves - her dowry.

Due to her stubborn brother, she has to fight both him and her new husband! Her brother, the village "Squire," is portrayed by Victor McLaglen - British, not Irish, by birth - and another favorite actor utilized in other movies by John Ford. He also was a prizefighter in his youth, the first boxer to take on heavyweight champion Jack Johnson in 1909. Victor does a fair job boxing the Duke in the movie. They both look like they had a fun fight.

Did you know The Quiet Man was first published as a short story in the Saturday Evening Post? John Ford read it, bought the rights for $10 (TEN DOLLARS??) but before he could get financing for the film, he was told to make a western first. Rio Grande also starred John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara, with Ford directing. But Ford won the Best Director Academy Award that year for The Quiet Man, which also won Best Cinematography. Indeed! Both well deserved.
Keep an eye on the minor characters in the film, from the pub owner to the local widow, the priest, the minister without a parish since all the residents are Catholic, and Michaleen Oge Flynn - played by Barry Fitzgerald to fine effect - the village's matchmaker. I think he's the best quirky character of the lot. You have to cheer him on and smile at his way of looking at things.

But all of the actors gave fine performances, as well as the Irish extras who no doubt had a blast being in the movie. The green beauty of Ireland is stunning. To the left is the cottage where the movie was filmed, and I've also included an image of the bridge in the gorgeous countryside. What's not to like about such lovely green meadows, charming cottages, quiet village life -- which harbors an underlying layer of healthy gossip about residents -- as in any American western town!

Even the music in the movie gives the viewer a sense of place, with Irish airs and a melody penned by an Irish policeman/songwriter, called "The Isle of Inisfree."

On St. Patrick's Day, I'll be popping in The Quiet Man and enjoying a good Irish western. I'll get my teapot out, make some soda bread or perhaps some scones. Or maybe I'll have a McDonald's shamrock shake! I am an American, after all.
And here's the cover of my newly released sequel to my Spur-Award winning western historical mystery, Double Crossing...  showcasing the continuing adventures of Lily and Ace. Double or Nothing is available on Amazon for Kindle, and will also be available in print soon! Check out the book trailer by clicking here!!
A mysterious explosion. A man framed for murder. A strong woman determined to prove his innocence.

October, 1869: Lily Granville, now heiress to a considerable fortune, rebels against her uncle’s strict rules in Sacramento, California. Ace Diamond, determined to win Lily, invests in a dynamite factory for a quick “killing,” but his status as a successful businessman fails to impress her guardian. An explosion in San Francisco, mere hours before Lily elopes with Ace to avoid a forced marriage, sets off a chain of unforeseen consequences.
Despite Lily’s protests that her new husband has been framed, Ace is dragged off to jail as the culprit. Evidence mounts against him. Lily must learn who was actually behind the diabolical plan… and save Ace from the hangman’s noose. Will she become a widow before a true wife?
Here are the BUY LINKS to the Amazon Kindle, B&N Nook and Smashwords.


  1. Fine post about a great, great film. Now I want to watch it again, too!

  2. Good stuff, Meg. Must go back and watch that movie.

  3. One of my all time Fav John Wayne/Maureen O'Hara pictures..

  4. A great movie. Pity the author of the short story only got $10! And I am intrigued by your novel, Meg.

  5. Thanks, all! I LOOOOVE this movie, along with True Grit (both versions), and am gearing up to watch the Duke and Mo. :-D

  6. Meg, I love THE QUIET MAN, too. Of course, I'm crazy about John Wayne, anyhow, but pair him up with my fave female actress of all times and it's a true event for me! I'm so glad you blogged about this wonderful movie--I think many times it gets overlooked.

  7. Hi Meg,
    What a terrific post. I think I have watched every John Wyane Western movie. I really love the man, so talented. The pictures of Ireland were beautiful.
    The Quiet Man was a great movie.



  8. Meg, my husband and I have watched that film so often we know the dialogue. When we were in Ireland, we saw where the film was shot, and visited the B&B where Maureen O'Hara stayed during filming. The owner changed a closet into a tiny bath and shower for her. Thanks for the happy memories!

  9. You really studied The Quiet Man. I've watched it several times, but nothing like you. LOL I enjoyed reading all this interesting info. Your book sounds so enticing.
    All the best to you.

  10. My daddy took me to see this movie in Corsicana, Texas when I was 8 yrs. old. It had just come out (tells you how old I am!). Didn't much care for all the lovey dovey stuff at the time, but sure did like the fights

  11. terrific film and wonderful scenery. Great performances.
    In fact, I'm going to watch it AGAIN in about 5 mins.

  12. Thanks, all! I agree, it's a great movie, just as great as True Grit. And The Searchers. And Rio Brava. McLintock. Big Jake, Chisum, The Cowboys, The Sons of Katie Elder, and Rooster Cogburn -- which is kinda where I got the dynamite idea for Double or Nothing! LOL... along with a fabulous book, "A Most Damnable Invention," by Stephen Bowen.

    Thanks, Margaret! From one Margaret to another. :-)

  13. Meg, sorry to be so late getting here. I LOVE the Quiet Man! It's got everything, a terrific story, great leading lady and leading man, and beautiful Irish landscapes. Thanks for reminding me about it.

  14. I've been to several of the locations where'The Quiet Man' was filmed, including the bridge and the pub in the village of Cong. The original cottage no longer exists, but there is a 'replica' in Cong - and you can imagine our surprise when we saw Maureen O'Hara's name in the visitor book there!

  15. Thanks for stopping in CC!

    Wow, Paula! I didn't know that -- one day I hope to visit the village. I know they sort of "celebrate" part of the movie being filmed there. Not all of it was! AND I found out since that while John Ford paid $10 for the rights, he promised the author more once the film was made. Whew. I felt sorry for the guy - guess the writer didn't get shafted after all. ;-)