There’s fun to be had on the road with Celtic Soul


Starring: Jay Baruchel, Eoin O’Callaghan Director: Michael McNamara Runtime: 83 minutes


Celtic Soul is a documentary feature which follows Canadian comedian Jay Baruchel (Tropic Thunder, Man Seeking Woman, This Is The End) and Irish football journalist Eoin O’Callaghan on their journey to visit ‘Paradise’ – the home of Celtic Football Club. On their travels, they stop along the way to unearth Baruchel’s Irish roots, marvel at the scenery and soak up Scottish and Irish culture, all before taking in a game at Celtic Park.

It is quite hard to review Celtic Soul considering the fact that it is basically a road trip between two good friends and die hard football fans. Both O’Callaghan and Baruchel live their dreams on camera for us all to see and, quite understandably, enjoy themselves along the way. By virtue of this, there is a lot of fun to be had here and you can’t help but join in on the frequent fits of laughter shared between the two friends, who share undeniable chemistry.

It is interesting to see Ireland through the eyes of a tourist, especially when Baruchel becomes acquainted with Hurling, gets lost on the meandering roads of Connemara and sits in on a trad session in the local pub. Luckily for the viewer, the Irish leg of their adventure is approached in such a way that both Irish and international film goers can happily come along for the ride.

The same can’t be said, however, for both football and non-football fans. As the road trippers enter the second half of their journey, their joint goal of meeting the Celtic team and stepping foot in Celtic Park becomes a reality. At this point, it is easy for non-football fans to become alienated from the fun – like being left out of an inside joke.

When they reach Glasgow, the film tries to pull some emotional strings for the audience. However, even as a football fan, it is often hard to fully arrive at this emotional point with Baruchel and O’Callaghan. This is mainly due to the documentary’s fairly bland and unambitious storytelling approach. There are times when the movie feels like it could have been recorded on a Go-Pro, as opposed to any high-tech piece of recording equipment, and, with no innovative and engaging visuals, you can often feel like you’re on the outside looking in.

Despite its low points, you can’t help but fall for Celtic Soul. Although it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, there’s enough here to keep you laughing and entertained, for the most part. You might not make it to ‘Paradise’ but you should enjoy the journey!

3 Stars (3 / 5)
Néil Rogers
About me

Originally hailing from Galway, Film In Dublin kindly adopted Néil to cover film on the other side of the country. With previous experience contributing to FilmFixx.com and Flirt FM, Néil is a dedicated cinema fan, who believes the only thing better than watching film, is talking about it!

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Ranelagh Arts Festival
Exploring the art of film at the Ranelagh Arts Festival
September 29, 2017
A Ghost Story is modern storytelling at its finest
August 11, 2017
The Big Sick
The Big Sick doesn’t stray away from the ‘Boy Meets Girl’ formula, it improves on it
July 27, 2017
Maudie is a quietly powerful study of this artist’s relationships and inspirations
July 18, 2017
A Break In The Cloud Selected For Film Fleadh Premiere
June 21, 2017
Revolutions
Roller Derby Doc Revolutions Rolls Into Cinemas This Month
June 09, 2017
A Break In The Clouds
Production Begins On Tristan Heanue’s A Break In The Clouds
May 05, 2017
Jadotville Jacks: Untold Story of Irish Bravery
October 12, 2016

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *