Jack of All Maids

Entertainment, Irish Culture
Directed by:
Tomas MacAnna
Produced by:
DSF Productions


28 mins

Renowned Abbey actor Jack MacGowran investigates Irish courtship rituals from a male perspective in this slice of 1952.

A series of humorous vignettes showcase the talents of this extraordinary character actor, best known for his theatre work with Samuel Beckett and his film work including a role in the classic horror movie, The Exorcist. MacGowran features as a romantic philosopher and adopts various roles throughout the film to demonstrate how to court and woo a colourful array of comely maids. From a gaeilgeoir, to a Frenchman to a coy Victorian gent his characters delight and entertain. And the ladies provide fine performances with star turns from Abbey Theatre actors Joan O’Hara, Marie Ní Dhomhnaill and Doreen Madden.

Directed by Abbey stalwart writer/ director Tomás MacAnna the film provided an opportunity for the players to explore the relatively new medium of film and now survives as a wonderful record of Irish acting talent of the day. Eamonn Andrews provides a light-hearted commentary throughout in what was hailed by The Irish Times as ‘The first all-Irish comedy film’.

With kind permission of John Flynn.