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  • Sorry to whomever thought this was "a lame waste of a fine actress" (the wonderful Janeane Garofalo) but for the record, Irishmen (and women, one presumes) actually *do* say "bollocks" with the frequency with which Americans say the "S" word, and there's merely ONE "pee" joke in the entire film.

    Sheesh.

    That said, this is an utterly charming film, involving a US Senator (Jay O. Sanders) from Boston with Kennedian aspirations ~ although he's trailing badly in the polls for re-election. So he and acerbic campaign manager Denis Leary send their jaded top aide (JG) to Ireland to find the Senator's geneology ~ his "roots" as it were ~ for campaign purposes.

    Unfortunately for her, the tiny town in which she's to do her research is just beginning its annual "Matchmaking Festival," wherein this really takes hold of Erin-firma.

    City~gal JG, who's used to [and yearns for] faxes, cell-phones and email is suddenly the top candidate for the gentry. And her quest for the Senator's geneology proves slowly to fall below her expectations.

    But Milo O'Shea, as the town's premiere matchmaker, wagers with a matchmaking rival that he can get JG together with one of the town's seeming ne'er-do-wells (David O'Hara) and the latter is just as eager to ... ummm.. "fax" her as well.

    To say more would spoil the fun. And it *is* fun. And poignant. And sweet. And occasionally acid-witted. Only one solid "rewind and watch it again" belly laugh, but a lot of great plotting and a fun love story.

    Sure it's candy, but it's infinitely edible.

    You want lame? See a Jim Carrey movie. Any of them. Want to see talent wasted? Cameron Diaz screams to mind.

    Janeane Garofalo in *anything* is better than just about anyone in most films today.

    4 Stars, say I.
  • Ralpho7 July 2001
    If this movie isn't the best thing Janeane Garofalo has ever done it must be close. The acerbic wit she was known for on "The Larry Sanders Show" is there, but so is everything else. She's a three-dimensional character.

    It's refreshing to see a love story without a sex scene, or even a gratuitous nude or near nude scene. Most filmmakers nowadays would throw something like that in just to tease audiences with it in the trailer. But "Matchmaker" is an honest movie, and Garofalo's Marcy is tough yet vulnerable and loveable.

    Some would say that "Matchmaker" exploits the Irish by way of stereotyping them. I had the opposite impression. It seemed that the people who made this movie loved the Irish.

    Usually I find myself agreeing with the aggregate score of each movie in the IMDb. But in this case I'm out of the mainstream. The aggregate score is 6.2, which normally indicates a barely watchable movie. But I gave Matchmaker a 10.
  • This movie quickly became a family favourite, so much so that my sons and daughters each have a copy of their own. The movie is watched four or five times a year and none of us ever tire of it.Having watched it so often my children (now adults) know most of the dialogue and from time to time one or the other will launch into a reenactment of one of the scenes, accents and all. While, Garofalo and O'Hara are excellent, it is the remainder of the cast who provide most of the humour - some of the cast are well known here in Ireland, while others are less so. Regardless, their one line deliveries and interactions with one another will crack you up. You just have to see the 'cottage scene with the senator' it is priceless! I still end up laughing uncontrollably every time I see it. They say laughter is good for the 'soul' - watch the Matchmaker and you'll never have to worry about the state of its health!
  • This sunny comedy, directed with great verve by Mark Joffe, kept reminding me of the whimsical comedy "Local Hero" by Bill Forsyth. The film cashes in the folklore of Ireland as no other film, in recent memory does. "The Matchmaker" will charm, as well as disarm all those viewers looking for a nice time at the movies by immersing in its wonderful spell and taking the trip of discovery to Ireland.

    The story relies on all the color of the Emerald Island and its people. Where could there be a matchmaking festival, but if not in Ireland? The local characters live in a magical world. In a way, those people having lived in the area where the film takes place, are richer in traditions than we city folk are. It's a sobering experience for Marcy, the otherwise cynical girl that goes searching for her boss' roots in the old country and ends up being enchanted by what she finds there. It's an experience she will not forget easily.

    Jeanane Garofalo is wonderful as Marcy. This actress always projects an intelligent aura into everything she plays in films. Milo O'Shea is always amazing in anything he plays; he is no exception on this film. Mr. O'Shea is simply marvelous. David O'Hara, Paul Hickey, Maria Boyle Kennedy, Saffron Burrows and Denis Leary, among others, do excellent work under Mr. Joffe's direction.
  • thechosen115 June 2002
    I first watched this movie from the middle and I couldn't switch the channels after that. It was very different from the usual love stories. The interaction between the characters was great and Janeane Garofalo was brilliant. I watched it after a few weeks on video. Since then I've rented it quite a few times and I never get bored. Well worth your time. Funny and very sweet.
  • I love this movie, I am Irish, and take no offense at either the characters or the language (bollocks!!). All of which came across as very real. Good old fashioned Irish rogues, out to have a bit of "craic"(meaning fun, pronounced "crack"). This is one of my favorite Irish movies. Janeane Garofalo is beautiful and talented, Denis Leary is hilarious in his sleaziest, Milo O'Shea and Rosaline Linehan are hilarious also as the two rival matchmakers, although Rosaline wasn't given near enough to do. Lots of colorful Irish characters, Eamon Kelly, David Kelly too. If you like a bit of old fashioned "stage" Irishness, then you'll enjoy this movie, lots of laughs and little off color humor (when Eamon Kelly finds his missing teeth - yuk!)but definitely laugh out loud hilarious entertainment. Did I mention the lovely West of Ireland and Aran Islands scenery? Watch out for reviews with spoilers, as they'll ruin the whole movie for you.
  • This is one of my favorite movies of all time!! Janeane Garofaolo is amazing in this...she is funny and sardonic, while still being a very likable character. The actor that played Shaun did an excellent job as well..he was quite charming! I have watched this movie at least 15 times, and still get a great laugh whenever I watch it!!! Not to mention the last time I watched it I heard things I had not heard before. This is a very refreshing, light hearted romantic comedy that thankfully didn't choose to include a wild nude sex scene - it would have been awkward in this movie and would have taken away from it's charm. I highly recommend this movie!!!
  • This movie is so fun. Janeane Garofalo is perfect for the part and David O'Hara is charming. It would be great to see him more. I feel that the casting was well done. The Irish setting is especially lovely. I wish there were more films like this. It is a feel good "Americanish" romantic comedy with a delightful Irish feel which reminds you that there is a world outside of the US. It brings to mind another movie that makes me feel the same: American Women. Again, this movie takes place in Ireland, it transports you as well to a peaceful quaint village with charming characters and lovely scenery. Part of the charm of both these movies is the music.
  • A romantic comedy set in Ireland that weaves a spell with the unlikely themes of a cynical search into a Boston Senator's ancestral roots to boost poor ratings back home, and a rural matchmaking festival with its simple recipe for success. This delightful movie pokes gentle ironic fun at just about every cliche in the book, Irish, big-city American and political, and is refreshingly amusing on the way..... It never takes itself too seriously, Milo O'Shea is wonderful, David O'Hara has a fine touch, and Janeane Garofola apart from being a fine actress, has the most wonderful eyes and smile. A pity we don't see more actresses with this quality rather than the strange elongated creatures that inhabit Hollywood. I loved this movie. I loved the characters, the playfulness and humour, the people were real even though the setting was a fantasy..... and I still think the ending is one of the best..... often screen romances manage to interest, stimulate, inspire etc.... but this is the only one I've seen where both actors have captured the wonder and magic that happens when two human beings delight in each other...
  • I thoroughly enjoyed this film. It has a credible (in terms of dialogue) story, with wonderful acting all around, and is well put together. I am saddened by the fact that it blew through the theaters, but glad to have caught it on video.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Ladies, if your guy pauses the DVD during the Braveheart scene where blood spatters on the camera lens, and he loves the jaded sarcasm of a Denis Leary rant on Rescue Me, this might be one of the few romantic comedies he'll tolerate for your sake. Mention that The Matchmaker spotlights Braveheart's David O'Hara and that Leary is probably the main reason for an R-rating due to language. If that actually works, and he's anything like my guy, you can needle him about getting misty-eyed during the last 15 minutes of the flick. This is a good movie for established couples with disparate "His and Hers" DVD collections. It meets somewhere in the middle. And it's devoid of all the warm, fuzzy, mushy stuff. Janeane Garofalo's "Marcy" is not particularly graceful or perfectly-coiffed; nor is she a size 2. (Say thank you, ladies). And David O'Hara's "Sean" is equally down-to-earth, never missing an opportunity to take what most date movies would turn into a spectacle of male bravado - and completely bungling it. This one is endearing, and it gives those of us living a flawed existence hope that there is someone equally as flawed out there - just waiting for us to trip over them.
  • I really don't understand why Janeanne Garofalo doesn't get more roles. She is a truly wonderful actress who owns the screen when she's on it. There is never anything forced about her performances. They always seem natural. Here, she plays Marcy Tizard, a spin doctor for a U.S. senator trying to get re-elected. Her job has become to track down his relatives from the small town in Ireland where his family emigrated from. This will help the senator secure the Irish vote in Chicago and win him the election. So off to Ireland she goes in an attempt to find his missing relatives. Of course, nothing is ever easy and Marcy finds herself smack dab in the middle of a match making festival. While fending off possible suitors, she becomes entwined in the lives of several colourful locals. Among them is of course, the local matchmaker (Milo O'Shea) who has taken to setting her up with Sean (David O'Hara), the local bartender and former journalist. The humour is warm and the characters are all well drawn out. Denis Leary has a small role as a colleague and resident ***hole. The film truly belongs to Garofalo as she is perfectly cast in the role of weary and cynical Marcy. Give it a shot. It's a near perfect match.
  • OK...so some may say The Matchmaker is a bit cheesy, but I completely disagree! If we take this movie for what it's meant to be -- a whimsical look at not only two different people getting to know each other, but two people from two entirely different cultures becoming entangled -- then you will fall as in love with this movie as I have! Not only was this story very sweet (I swear I've seen this movie at least 100 times), but, whist living in Ireland, I was blessed to have been able to visit the quiet village of Roundstone, where most of the movie was filmed. I tell you, the depiction of the Irish in this movie was highly accurate, and if you've never known an Irish person, or visited the country (the Republic of Ireland, not Northern Ireland), you might think the dialog much exaggerated. Trust me...it isn't.

    So, if you'd like to take a bit of a glimpse into the true nature of the lovely Irish people -- from their use of colorful language to their friendly demeanor -- or just want a bit of the 'craic,' I highly recommend this film. The only this I wished for was a soundtrack to the film, as there were some great songs!
  • One of the wife and my favorite movies. Definitely a "feel good" flick. Has many elements that could appeal to anyone that has an interesting family. The interactions between characters should bring memories of anyones family gatherings. You could recognize characters and enjoy the scenery as well as the twists and turns of the plot. Characters are real. Scenery of the Green Isle is lovely. From the locals in their attempt to make the best of their yearly chance to make a buck (pound) from the tourist visitors attending their festival. To the insensitive late comers who attempt to manipulate the events to their own advantage. The leads, Janeane Garofalo and David O'Hara are endearing as they overcome their glaring differences to fall in love. Each time we watch this we come away from it with smiles and look forward to seeing it again.
  • The Matchmaker is a consistently funny, touching, romantic movie with lovely scenery (shot on location!) and great Irish music. All I knew at the outset of seeing it was that it involved two of my favorite things...Ireland and Janeane Garofalo. I saw it, and added a third...David O'Hara!

    It's been awhile since I saw a couple as realistically portrayed as Marcy and Sean, although in the midst of it was a lot of magic. They fight, they bonk heads, they kiss, they fall head over heels...then they nearly miss the boat! You'll find yourself cheering them on at every turn.

    The rest of the cast is a scream, from Denis Leary as a snide jerk of a campaign manager to Jay Sanders as the slightly dim Senator McGlory to the matchmaker himself, Milo O'Shea. They all play off each other to create a wonderfully woven story.

    Sure'n I've almost worn my copy through, and will watch it again tomorrow! GO RENT IT!
  • I absolutely loved this movie. It's a very quaint Irish romantic comedy. I think the characters play off each other very well and the sarcasm is well matched.

    The overall sarcastic themes are interspersed within the movie, you have everything from politics to love with a few rivalries thrown in between.

    I also really loved the chemistry between Marcy Tizzard(Jeanne Garafalo) and Sean Kelly (David O'Hara). T he movie starts with Marcy after another hangover - at work trying to just hide for the day when the politician she's working for Senator John McGlory (Jay O'Sanders)from Boston is getting his butt kicked in the polls. His head campaign manager Nick (Dennis Leary) comes up with this plan to help him find his Irish roots and they force Marcy to go to Ireland to find any McGlory that exists. Reluctantly, Marcy agrees and is on her way to a small Irish town, Ballinagra (pronounced exactly as is). Hilarity ensues when she realizes she is thrown right in the middle of a matchmaking festival. Her adventures take her to different locales - in search of any McGlorys who might have immigrated to Boston. In the meantime, Dermit O'Brian (Milo O'Shea) the local matchmaker decides he wants to record how to match-make because he is thinking of big business. So during the movie, we see him at relevant parts tell the camera the art of matchmaking. Dermit is a very integral part of the whole movie and is such a quintessential Irish figure that his charm just glides you through the whole movie. In the movie we see many relationships along the way. Sean with his brother Declan and his wife Sarah who own a local hotel. Dermit with a rival matchmaker Millie O'Dowd, Sean with Marcy and other characters who are looking for love in all the wrong places. There are many sight gags thrown in and behind the scene conversations that are hilarious. The only bad thing I can say about this movie is that there is a lot of profanity thrown in, but it is for funny purposes. I am not usually fond of cursing, but a lot of it is placed to make the scene funny. I don't think it was intended to just insult the characters. Again, that is why it is rated R also for language only.

    All in all, it is one of my favorites and I must have watched it 20 times. I really liked the whole village feel of the movie and thought the characters were quite endearing. If you are looking for a romantic comedy through the eyes of a different culture, this is the movie to see, just be prepared for some profanity.

    A+
  • My wife LOVES this film! She has seen it dozens of times.

    While it's surprising the amount of swearing there is for a romantic comedy ("for the unromantic"), it's stil a good time. What do you expect with Janeanne Garofalo and Denis Leary in a film? The romance itself is a tad forced, but that's secondary to the rest of the film. What makes the film for me is all the small moments. The director did a nice job of creating moments or giving the actors room that give insight into the characters. From the Senator's comment under his breath about the press - "I hate you all. When I'm President, I'll have you all killed", followed by a big smile as he steps out of his limo, to Dermot's asides after another failed attempt to videotape his ad on camera, to Michael's failed attempts to attract Marcy's attention, it's the little things that carry this film. If you go into the film looking for a nice little film with a great soundtrack and lush images of the Irish landscape, you won't be disappointed.

    What I am disappointed about is the soundtrack seems to not exist. Anyone know where to find one?
  • Warning: Spoilers
    The scenery is fantastically beautiful with aerial shots galore and all that green Irish-isle scenery. The End.

    What ? TEN lines ? argh.

    OK. We need to understand that I have nothing against rom-coms.. good ones that develop the characters and make the viewer care what happens to them. This one does not do that.

    We are presented with a not very likable "heroine" and she meets many many Irish village "types" who we really don't get to know all that well. It's not made clear just why the two leads are attracted to each other. There are so many quirky local 'types" and no reason given why any of them like our lady so quickly. She isn't all that likable, really.

    The American politician and his handler are just too close to reality to be funny at this point in time.

    The actors do as much as they can but for me the story line was not enough. Milo O'Shea, as usual, was terrific, btw.

    Did I mention the wonderful scenery ? Watch "The Quiet Man" instead !
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Oh, 'The Matchmaker'. Is there a more perfect film around?? If you're looking for high-brow entertainment,certainly, but if you want something fluffy to watch on a lonely afternoon then this is what you are seeking.

    Set for the most part in Ireland, 'The Matchmaker' follows an American city girl who is thrust into a rural setting when her boss, an American senator, sends her to Balinagragh (have no idea how to spell it!) in order to seek out his Irish roots. She accepts the mission, is thrust into the heart of an Irish matchmaking festival, meets a charming Irish rogue and falls in love with the inhabitants of the town. So far, so predictable. However this film is charming and comic; especially in its portrayal or rural/small town Irish life - the depictions are scarily realistic.

    Garofalo is in her prime in this role; both age-wise and in terms of her performance, as she is portraying a character who is still slightly cynical, but less bitchy and more likable than many of her previous characters. The supporting cast is great and provides the majority of the film's charm; Milo O'Shea particularly standing out as the local matchmaker.

    These factors, plus the fact that I'm a sucker for an Irish accent,make this film one of the most enjoyable of those i have on my shelves and is watched again and again.
  • Sorry Mickey Knox and a few others but this is a charming and very funny film. I live with a lady from Dublin and a great many of my friends, here in Israel, are Irish as well.

    There is no point repeating the plot, others have done so better than I could. It is very funny, it is beautiful to look at and I itch to visit Ireland again so that I can visit the locations. Even in winter Galway looked green and magnificent.

    The acting is superb throughout. Anything with the Milo O'Shea and David Kelly just has to be. But I am unfair to single out any actors, they are all great, as was the script and direction. True, the story could have told in an hour or so, but who cares, we went to bed happy. I only recorded it from TV one night we were out because it was Irish, no way I will ever wipe it.

    Let me single out one scene. That in which the Senator is introduced to his "family". Absolutely priceless and should be in anyone's top 100 funny film bits. When the boy enters from the left and says ......... but, no, that would be a spoiler. Just see it for yourself.

    As for the swearing. I was not offended, it just added authenticity. And the matchmaking really does happen in a small village in Ireland.
  • Marcy (Janeane Garofalo) is working on a Massachusetts senatorial campaign for a gentleman named McGlory. It is a tooth-and-nail fight between the candidates and McGlory is desperate for some "oomph". Having always been told that his family came from a certain village in Ireland, he sends Marcy across the ocean to locate his long lost roots. The would-be senator feels this would connect him with the many Irish-American voters in the east coast state. Marcy goes, reluctantly. In the village, she has a hard time finding temporary digs, as there is a big "matchmaking" festival going on. She is reduced to staying at a little inn, in a tiny room, and having a handsome man named Sean using her bathtub, if the mood strikes him. The main local matchmaker (Milo O'Shea) says Marcy and Sean are a good match but Marcy resists this notion. However, on her search for McGlory's past, she meets up with Sean on many an occasion. Could something be brewing in the love department? First, this is a great movie to see Garofalo in action. Long heralded as a mighty comedian, she deftly carries this film with her large talent for humor and she looks beautiful, too. The Irish setting is also so lovely that one almost wishes every movie could be shot in this beautiful country. O'Shea is "simply marvelous" in his role as the man who, unmarried himself, gets other unlikely couples together. Then, too, the script is quite nice, with lines such as "when have you ever been backwards at being forward?"! There is a big surprise at the end, which makes for a giant sendoff in the laugh department. Do you love romantic comedies with sparkle, wit, and lovely surroundings? This movie is a great match for your late night film enjoyment wishes.
  • jangu6 December 2002
    It didn't expect much from this but was totally won over but the warmth, charm and spirit of this movie. And it is truly funny! I won't go into a lenghty speech about it's many virtues, but just say that i laughed hysterically when the arranged family gathering scene came around! So I urge you all: SEE IT!
  • Janeane Garofolo and the Irish countryside are magnificent, and the rest is whimsical enough so as not to spoil a good time. Jay O. Sanders turns in another strong supporting performance, as he did in Music of the Heart and. V. I. Warshawski. Lots of lyrical moments and good humor throughout. Not a classic, but a lot of fun.
  • sill10 November 1998
    I laughed! I cried! I bought the movie!! Wonderful 'community' of characters - the likes of seen in "The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill..." & "Four Weddings & a Funeral".

    Wouldn't be surprised if Americans (as in U.S.A.) don't appreciate as much - since Americans are not depicted in the most favorable light. Perhaps better suited to sense of humor shared by Great Britain, Australia & Canada.
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