Organized crime is often seen as the domain of Italian criminals who head the mafia. While all ethnic groups have ventured into the criminal world, Irish mob activity has been portrayed frequently on the big screen and to prove that, here are 7 Irish movie gangsters who will get your attention.
Colin Sullivan, "The Departed" (2006)
Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon) is a double agent. Growing up as a key member of Frank Costello's (Jack Nicholson) Boston crime syndicate Sullivan manages to get accepted into the Police Academy and attain a position within the Massachusetts State Police. During the day he works with his fellow lawmen on an investigation into the illegal activities of Costello while secretly he sabotages the case by any reporting police movement back to Costello.
Ray, "In Bruges" (2008)
Ray (Colin Farrell) is a young hit man in hiding when his most recent job goes awry, resulting in the murder of an innocent bystander. Harry (Ralph Fiennes) sends instruction to Ray that he must go to Bruges and stay out of sight while he waits for his next job. In the meantime Ray contemplates whether or not to trade his career in London for a simpler life in the medieval Belgium city.
Tom Regan, "Miller's Crossing" (1990)
This Prohibition-era film portrays Tom Regan, played by Gabriel Byrne, as the right-hand man to an Irish mob boss in the 1930s. With the arise of a feud with another mob boss over a cheating bookie and divided loyalties, Tom attempts to keep the peace. When tempers flare and the rivalry increases Tom begins to question himself.
Michael Sullivan, "Road to Perdition" (2002)
Michael Sullivan (Tom Hanks) is a swift and efficient hit man working for the Irish mob in Boston during 1931. However problems arise when Sullivan's young son follows him out of the house one night and witnesses him murder a man. Sullivan is then on the run with his son in an attempt to stay alive and take revenge on those who were sent to kill him and his family.
Amsterdan Vallon, "Gangs of New York" (2002)
It's the middle of the 19th century and Amsterdam Vallon (Leonardo DiCaprio) has returned to New York City to avenge the murder of his father by Bill the Butcher Cutting (Daniel Day-Lewis). Working with a pickpocket (Cameron Diaz), Vallon begins to get close to the Butcher in order to act out his revenge and subsequently bring peace to the Five Points area of New York.
Terry Noonan, "State of Grace" (1990)
After a 10 year absence, Terry Noonan (Sean Penn) returns to his home of Hell's Kitchen in New York City. He meets up with his old pal Jackie (Gary Oldman), brother to the leader of the Irish mob. Terry soon faces the decision of whether to remain loyal to Jackie and his crew or to make a new life for himself and his former girlfriend, Kathleen (Robin Wright).
Doug MacRay, "The Town" (2010)
Colm (Pete Postlethwaite) blackmails him into pulling one more job with the gang — robbing the cash room at Fenway Park. Leading to one of the best heist scenes in recent years.