This year's 10th annual San Francisco Irish Film Festival offers another happy heap of docs, new indies, classics, family fare, and shorts (the latter served with complimentary Magners Irish Hard Cider). Highlights abound. On opening night, director Steph Green, a Mill Valley native and Oscar nominee now living in Ireland, returns to the Bay Area to present her new indie romantic drama Run & Jump. This stars Will Forte as an American doctor with a research grant to study a uniquely afflicted Irish family, and should not be confused with director Kieron J. Walsh's Jump, a multistory crime thriller about fates colliding on New Year's Eve. That one screens on Friday, as does The Hardy Bucks Movie, a romp of soccer fandom and road-trip debauchery spawned from a YouTube mockumentary series. Then Saturday brings the differently sporty documentary When Ali Came to Ireland, chronicling Muhammed Ali's 1972 fight with Alvin Lewis in Dublin. Preceding that is Mike Newell's 1992 film Into the West, one of the loveliest, family-friendliest movies ever to star Gabriel Byrne and a magical stallion. Be sure not to miss it. Better yet: Kiss it, it's Irish.
The San Francisco Irish Film Festival begins at 7 p.m. Sept. 19 and runs through Sept. 21.
Sept. 19-21, 2013