Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Mark Joffe|
|Written by||Karen Janszen
Jay O. Sanders
|Music by||John Altman|
|Editing by||Paul Martin Smith|
|Distributed by||Universal Studios|
|Release date(s)||3 October 1997|
|Running time||97 min|
The MatchMaker is a 1997 film comedy film set in Ireland.
Marcy Tizzard (Janeane Garofalo) is assistant to Senator John McGlory (Jay O. Sanders) from Boston, Massachusetts. In an attempt to court the Irish-American vote in a tough reelection battle, the bumbling senator's chief of staff, Nick (Denis Leary), sends Marcy to Ireland to find McGlory's relatives or ancestors.
Marcy arrives at the fictional village of Ballinagra (Irish: Baile na Grá, literally the Town of Love) as it is preparing for the annual matchmaking festival. She attracts the attention of two rival professional matchmakers, Dermot (Milo O'Shea) and Millie (Rosaleen Linehan), as well as roguish bartender Sean (David O'Hara).
The locals tolerate her genealogical search while trying to match her with various bachelors. Sean tries to woo Marcy despite her resistance to his boorish manners. After they have begun their romance, they return home to Sean's house one afternoon to find his estranged wife Moira (Saffron Burrows) waiting for them. Marcy leaves Sean, upset that he did not disclose his marriage to her.
McGlory and Nick arrive in Ballinagra, although Marcy's been unable to locate any McGlory relatives. McGlory discovers Sean's wife's maiden name is Kennedy and brings her back to Boston as his fiancée just in time for the election, and wins by a small margin. While at the victory party, McGlory's father reveals privately to Marcy that the family is Hungarian, not Irish. The family name had been changed at Ellis Island when they immigrated, but as they settled in Boston with its large Irish population, he never told his son their true lineage.
Sean follows Marcy to Boston, and they reconcile.
Critics on Rotten Tomatoes gave it an aggregate score of 58%.
The film earned $1,378,930 in its first weekend and had a total gross of $3,392,080 in 705 theaters.
Marcy's expectations clash with a host of colorful rural Irish characters in the tradition of such other works as The Irish R.M..
The movie was filmed on-location in the town of Roundstone, County Galway. Besides the personalities of the villagers, the film establishes a sense of place through a generous use of village scenes, the local surrounding farms and a trip to the Aran Islands with cavorting near Dún Aengus. Also, Irish music is heard frequently through out the movie, both as background music and in scenes where its performed live as when a handsome Aran Islander (Vincent Walsh) courts Marcy with his sean nós rendition of Raglan Road. Van Morrison's song Irish Heartbeat is also featured on the soundtrack.