Darby O’Gill and the Little People

McMullan’s Irish Pub, Sept. 7

The 11-year-old local Irish folk-rock band gained possession of the night with a broad spectrum of cover songs (including Flogging Molly, Pat Benatar and Mumford & Sons) and a few unforgettable originals, such as “I Got So Drunk (I Crapped Meself).” Vocalist and fiddler Tristan Moyer (a.k.a. Nancy Whiskey) offered fierce yet effortless vocal articulation. She was accompanied by front man Andy Morris (a.k.a., Darby O’Gill) and the busking spells of accordionist Joseph Brailsford (a.k.a. Ringo Malarkey). In this packed house, the audience also became the show. No one could ignore the whiskey toasts between each song and the guzzling of stouts throughout the evening. The five-piece band (their name inspired by a 1959 Disney movie) couldn’t have done a better combination of true Irish tunes and sarcastic comedic comments. ★★★★☆

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(PG-13) ★★★☆☆ Already known as Whitney Houston’s swan song, this remake of the original actually works. Sparkle (Jordin Sparks) is one-third of a singing sister act who writes her own material and has to hide it from her God-fearing mother (Houston). The mother, Emma, is a heartbroken vocalist, who chased her dreams at a young age but ran into bad luck and worse men. With deft direction and pleasantly restrained dramatics, as well as the performances, the film does its source material proud.

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