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'A crime against Irish accents': Jamie Dornan's Wild Mountain Thyme trailer takes a pasting

But Wild Mountain Thyme isn't the first movie slated for 'Oirish' twang


Under fire: Emily Blunt and Jamie Dornan in Wild Mountain Thyme

Under fire: Emily Blunt and Jamie Dornan in Wild Mountain Thyme

Under fire: Emily Blunt and Jamie Dornan in Wild Mountain Thyme

Jamie Dornan has been accused of committing "a crime against Irish accents" in his latest film.

After the trailer for Wild Mountain Thyme, a romantic comedy filmed in Co Mayo, was shared on Twitter, its stars were teased for their attempted southern twangs.

Co Down man Dornan, British actress Emily Blunt and veteran American star Christopher Walken all came in for some heavy criticism.

The film, written and directed by John Patrick Shanley, also stars Jon Hamm and tells a love story set against the landscape of rural Ireland.

However, this is not the first time a production has been ridiculed for the less-than-perfect Irish accents of its stars.

Pierce Brosnan wowed cinema-goers with his uncanny resemblance to former Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams in The Foreigner, but he was slated for his northern accent, which critics described as sounding like a mixture between a Navan accent and a Scottish one.

While people from outside the island of Ireland could be forgiven for butchering a Belfast accent, hearing Brosnan, who is from Navan, deliver his lines so unconvincingly was a huge shock for some.

Action movie star Gerard Butler played a loveable Irishman called Gerry Kennedy in the 2007 romantic tear-jerker PS I Love You, but his attempted southern accent was widely panned.

It was so woeful that Butler publicly apologised, the Scot saying that the experience of being attacked by critics and viewers alike had put him off ever attempting the feat again.

"After all those wonderful reviews and glorious feedback, I don't think that would be a good idea. I've ticked that box," the actor explained.

Brad Pitt's Northern Irish accent in The Devil's Own (1997), meanwhile, was so bad that it is still held up as the low-water mark by which all other poor accents are judged.

Pitt reportedly spent a few days hanging around west Belfast to perfect the necessary voice, clearly to no avail.

And who can forget Hollywood star Tom Cruise and his megawatt smile delivering the immortal line in the 1992 corn-fest Far and Away, "You're a corker, Shannon"?

Reacting to the film, the Irish Post branded the accent "more Jamaican than Connemaran".

Utterly cringeworthy and incomprehensible in parts, the movie set in the 19th century has become an 'Oirish' classic for all the wrong reasons. Writer Tony Parsons later called it "a stinker of a picture... far and away the worst film I have ever seen".

Julia Roberts is a repeat offender, having come in for criticism over both Michael Collins and Mary Reilly.

In Michael Collins, released in 1996 and also starring Liam Neeson, she plays Kitty Kiernan, who fell in love with the Irish revolutionary - but no one fell for the star's dodgy accent.

The same year, in Mary Reilly, she played an Irish housemaid who becomes embroiled in a love affair with her employer Dr Jekyll and his alter ego Mr Hyde. Her accent was roundly derided as being as poor as the plot.

Sean Connery appeared to have completely bypassed the character description for Jimmy Malone when he read the script for The Untouchables, particularly the bit that noted he was of an Irish persuasion.

Instead of attempting an Irish accent, Connery used a slightly comical version of his own Scottish drawl.

The actor's twang in the 1987 film was voted the worst movie accent of all time in 2003. His attempt did not impress the experts at Empire magazine, who named it the least credible in film history.

However, his 'Russian' accent in The Hunt for Red October must also surely give it a run for its money.

Belfast Telegraph