Irish Wish Is a Dream-like Fictional Story

‘Irish Wish,’ the Netflix rom-com starring Lindsay Lohan in the lead, charts a wishful narrative set against the backdrop of picturesque Ireland. Madeline “Maddie” Kelly lands herself the role of a bridesmaid in her childhood best friend Emma’s wedding to Paul Kennedy, the man of Maddie’s dreams. Consequently, the woman ends up making an impulsive wish that turns her life upside down as she wakes in a new reality where she’s engaged to Paul Kennedy. Yet, the new reality comes with its own complications, such as the charming English photographer, James Thomas, who might just help Maddie realize where her heart truly lies.

The film offers a classic rom-com narrative and a compelling cast of characters that fans of the genre will appreciate. Still, the familiar story structure, alongside the details of Maddie’s life as a book editor, may lead viewers to wonder about the story’s origins and possible connection to real life.

Irish Wish is Not Based on a True Story

‘Irish Wish’ begins with a seemingly grounded plotline about a woman’s hopeless pining over her co-worker. Nevertheless, the narrative takes a swift turn into the realm of fictionality with the early introduction of the fantastical elements. Therefore, with an outlandish magical wish at its narrative center, the story firmly cements itself as a fantasy. Thus, ‘Irish Wish’ remains a work of fiction credited to screenwriter Kirsten Hansen and director Janeen Damian, who brought the film to life.

Hansen and Damian’s respective experiences within the romantic comedy genre particularly help shape the film’s seamless narrative. Writer Hansen has previously penned numerous other similar films, such as ‘Nantucket Noel,’ ‘Cross Country Christmas,’ and ‘Love Under The Rainbow.’ Likewise, despite Damian’s limited experience as a director— with ‘Irish Wish’ as her sophomore directorial film— she has been involved in numerous projects, including ‘Much Ado About Christmas’ and ‘Love By Design.’

As such, this film’s narrative remains ripe with the genre conventions. For the same reason, the story finds a semblance of familiarity that viewers might be able to relate to other similar tales. For instance, the film shares a stark likeness with the beloved 2000s romantic comedy ‘27 Dresses.’ The protagonists in both films embark on similar journeys as they accept bridesmaid positions in the last wedding they’d ever want to attend— one between a close friend and their perpetual crush.

Likewise, James’ addition to the plot in ‘Irish Wish’ also remains recognizably reminiscent of Kevin from ’27 Dresses.’ While these shared similarities between the two films are simple coincidences— born from the frequency of tropes equipped within the genre— the latter’s popularity is bound to loom over the viewers’ minds. For the same reason, fans may recognize a sense of familiarity within Damian’s film.

Nonetheless, ‘Irish Wish’ sets itself apart from similar story structures with its fantastical element that infuses its narrative with whimsy— a befitting companion to the film’s setting within Ireland’s idyllic background. Even though the same ends up departing the narrative from realism, encouraging viewers to suspend their disbelief, the tale also benefits from the same, gaining playful and entertaining tools to deliver the thematic lesson to its protagonist.

As such, in a matter of days, Maddie undergoes a transformative journey that enlightens her of the significance of living outside of a daydream and allowing your instincts to guide your reality. Due to the same, her experiences— especially within her underappreciated career— might resonate with the audience, who may find their reality reflected in Maddie’s mundane life.

Furthermore, the employment of several real-life locations famous within the Irish country adds to the film’s scenery while also providing the characters and their storylines with connections to reality. For instance, the pleasant lake Lough Tay and the fascinating Cliffs of Moher serve a narrative purpose within the story, heightening the influence of these real-life landmarks within the tale. Nonetheless, despite its grounded setting and characters, the film’s glaring fantasy elements confine the story to fictionality. Ultimately, the story and its characters share no connections to real-life individuals or events.

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