I don't like Hallmark Movies and was afraid that's what this was going to be. But it was an extremely touching movie and very well acted. Very realistic.
A young, rather plain Irish girl with no job opportunities and a lackluster social life, in a small tight Irish town, moves to Brookland, NY. A job, a place to live, and opportunity is provided for her before she sets out, courtesy of a priest a friend knows. We quietly watch as this reserved girl finds her way in a strange, new, bustling world amongst the forward and bold American culture. We feel her intimidation, inexperience and fear; we experience the raw, emotional pain of homesickness and the loneliness of being so far away from home. She falls in love with an Italian young man who adores her; she blossoms into a lovely young woman and takes night classes to obtain a bookkeeping certificate with the aim of bettering herself. All is going well until her sister suddenly dies and she is called back home to Ireland to be with her distraught mother.
Before going back to Ireland, she quickly marries her Italian boyfriend and sets off for a one-month visit. While there fond memories of childhood and her homeland pull her heart back to the familiarity of home. Because her mother is so grateful for, and dependent on, her for care and happiness, Ailish doesn't tell her immediately that she's married. Through well-meaning friends, she spends some platonic time with a young unworldly, kind Irish man and finds herself growing to love him also. She doesn't go "over the line" with him, but there is an obvious emotional struggle that both confuses and frightens her. Should she go back to America to be with her husband and a country so foreign and still new to her; yet bursting with excitement and opportunity? Or stay where everything is familiar and quiet and where her lifelong memories, friendships and mother is. Everything is the same, and yet everything is so different for her upon her return. Because of her certificate and sophistication, new opportunities open to her at home; and the possibility of love could be hers. This only confuses her more and increases the struggle. She doesn't love her husband any less and misses him; but the attraction and love for a kindly man---different than her good husband---must be dealt with. It's a struggle that is hard but very human. An incident makes up her mind for her, and at the end we are convinced it was the right choice to make.
It's a beautiful story and very sensitively directed. One poster commented there was too much nudity. They must be mistaking it with another movie because there was NO nudity whatsoever. It wasn't that kind of movie and the director didn't mess it up by forcing it unnecessarily into the movie as is done so often. I so appreciated that.
There was a sexual scene that was NOT graphic, but would be too old for teens. A couple of swear words. I'm shocked this was referred to as a "horrible" movie. If you're into sex, violence, and gripping adrenaline, you may not like this. I like some adrenaline, but also introspective movies that touch the heart and draw me into the emotions of the main character. This is one of those movies. It is not at all sappy. I'm surprised I've never heard of this movie. It deserves more attention.