Ireland has a reputation and it’s so hard to get it just right when portraying it on screen. On one hand it could be an outsider’s view of the country which could evoke all the worst stereotypes imaginable. On the other hand, it could be a view of Ireland not often seen which pays tribute to the way of life, whilst still acknowledging that parts of Ireland may live up to what people expect.
In Doolin, a small village on the west coast of Ireland it feels more isolated from the rest of the country. Whilst more modern sensibilities are creeping in, there are still traditions kept and proudly shown off to anybody who wants to listen. Despite the country’s language being taken by the English, there’s something that can never be taken – music, and that’s what absorbs the people that live there, time and time again.
The Job of Songs is a documentary directed by Lila Schmitz about the small village of Doolin and how despite their isolation, they find solace in music. Talking to a variety of people from the very old to the very young, it shows that where there is music, there is hope.
However, that’s not without the villagers acknowledging the hardships they bear seemingly so far from the rest of the world. Some find music a peaceful escape, admitting that without music there would be nothing whilst others see it as the thing that saved their lives from depression and alcoholism.
Something which turns The Job of Songs into something far more introspective and thoughtful than people may think.
There’s also the tourism and how Doolin became its own attraction as it’s seen as the quintessential portrayal of Ireland. Something which creates mixed reactions from its residence whereas some like what it’s done for their economy, whilst others quietly resent how they’ve become something to stare at.
Overall, The Job of Songs offers a far more melancholic look at Ireland than audiences may expect. Although perhaps that could be down to our expectations, looking in from outside at a tiny village full of happy little Irishmen.
We hope you're enjoying BRWC. You should check us out on our social channels, subscribe to our newsletter, and tell your friends. BRWC is short for battleroyalewithcheese.