“The Stag” (“The Batchelor Weekend” in the US) – a must see movie about being male in Ireland


“The Stag” is  an exploration of male friendship in modern day Ireland that will make you laugh, cringe, cry and be very very glad that you watched it. I wish there were more movies like this.

comingsoon.net summarises the plot as

A bachelor party weekend takes some unexpected detours in this hilarious and heartfelt Irish comedy, about a foppish groom-to-be (Hugh O’Conor) who reluctantly agrees to go on a camping trip before his nuptials. But when his fiancee’s alpha-male brother, nicknamed “The Machine,” unexpectedly turns up, all concepts of masculinity are challenged — and a leisurely weekend in the great outdoors takes a turn for the worse.

the-stag-again“The Stag” is the perfect antidote to dreadful Hollywood  movies like “The Hangover” that glorify boy-men behaving badly and blaming it on drink, drugs and the fact of being male, rather then owning their own weakness.

The men in this movie aren’t stereotypes, they’re ordinary men, who’s long association and city-dwelling lives make them more comfortable with each other than they are with the great outdoors. Yet, like ordinary men everywhere, they have stresses and anxieties that they try their best not to confront. The arrival of “The Machine” takes them out of their comfort zone and into a terrain that ultimately allows them to be honest with each other and themselves.

Their progress is hilarious but never trivial. There is always as much truth as comedy and as much love as there is pain.


The acting is extraordinarily good, especially by Peter McDonald as “The Machine”.  He is larger than life and yet completely believable. He also co-wrote the script with the Director, John Butler.

Take a look at the trailer below and then do yourself a favour: gather some friends around you and watch this together. You’ll have a great time and you’ll learn a lot about each other.


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