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Kings in Grass Castles 

The life of an Irish immigrant family in Australia in the second half of the 19th century.




1998   Unknown  
2 wins. See more awards »


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Series cast summary:
Rafe Andrews Rafe Andrews ...  M. P. (aged 7) 2 episodes, 1998
Stewart Armstrong Stewart Armstrong ...  Mr. Robbins 2 episodes, 1998
Craig Ashley Craig Ashley ...  Jarrold 2 episodes, 1998
Maurie Barlin Maurie Barlin ...  Dinnie Skehan 2 episodes, 1998
Donal Beecher Donal Beecher ...  James Maguire 2 episodes, 1998
Michael Butcher Michael Butcher ...  Maloney 2 episodes, 1998
Alan Cinis Alan Cinis ...  Auctioneer 2 episodes, 1998
Peter Corbett Peter Corbett ...  Darby 2 episodes, 1998
Imelda Corcoran ...  Poor Mary 2 episodes, 1998
Cormac Costello Cormac Costello ...  Skinner 2 episodes, 1998
Max Cullen ...  Mr. Costello 2 episodes, 1998
Margaret D'Arcy Margaret D'Arcy ...  Mammy Amy 2 episodes, 1998
Essie Davis ...  Mary Costello 2 episodes, 1998
Conal De Huggard Conal De Huggard 2 episodes, 1998
Michael K. DeVaney Michael K. DeVaney ...  Young Michael 2 episodes, 1998
Stephen Dillane ...  Patsy 2 episodes, 1998
Ernie Dingo ...  Jimmy 2 episodes, 1998
Peter Driffield Peter Driffield ...  Vicar 2 episodes, 1998
Marcus Eyre ...  Fruin 2 episodes, 1998
Fionnula Flanagan ...  Bridget Durack 2 episodes, 1998
James Fox ...  Longman 2 episodes, 1998
Patrick Frost Patrick Frost ...  Clerk of Works 2 episodes, 1998
Sean Gilroy Sean Gilroy ...  Father McAlroy 2 episodes, 1998
Marc Aden Gray Marc Aden Gray ...  M. P. (aged 21) 2 episodes, 1998
Derek Halligan Derek Halligan ...  Rent Collector 2 episodes, 1998
Trevor Jamieson ...  Boontamurra Youth 2 episodes, 1998
Nick Jasprizza ...  Big Johnnie 2 episodes, 1998
Wayne Scott Kermond Wayne Scott Kermond ...  Stumpy Michael 2 episodes, 1998
Ningali Lawford Ningali Lawford ...  Valley 2 episodes, 1998
Julian Leather Julian Leather ...  Long Michael 2 episodes, 1998
Alice Livingstone Alice Livingstone ...  Margaret Darby 2 episodes, 1998
Tom Long ...  Pat Tully 2 episodes, 1998
Scott Lowe Scott Lowe ...  Inspector Gilmour 2 episodes, 1998
Susan Lynch ...  Sarah 2 episodes, 1998
Elspeth MacTavish Elspeth MacTavish ...  Mrs. Longman 2 episodes, 1998
Des McAleer Des McAleer ...  Michael 2 episodes, 1998
Peter McDonald ...  Game Keeper 2 episodes, 1998
T.P. McKenna ...  Lord Dunraven 2 episodes, 1998
Ingrid Menge Ingrid Menge ...  Kate McInnes 2 episodes, 1998
Stanley Mirindo Stanley Mirindo ...  Dinnakin 2 episodes, 1998
Sharon Mitchell ...  Koorie Jane 2 episodes, 1998
David Ngoombujarra David Ngoombujarra ...  Burrakin 2 episodes, 1998
Vicki Ngurruwuthum Vicki Ngurruwuthum ...  Burrakin's wife 2 episodes, 1998
Niki Owen Niki Owen ...  Maid 2 episodes, 1998
Damian Pike Damian Pike ...  John Costello 2 episodes, 1998
Susan Rigg Susan Rigg ...  Mrs. Robbins 2 episodes, 1998
Brian Rooney Brian Rooney ...  J. W. (aged 19) 2 episodes, 1998
Paul Shillingsworth Paul Shillingsworth ...  Koorie Bill 2 episodes, 1998
Robert Simper ...  Sergeant Moreton 2 episodes, 1998
Ritchie Singer ...  Mr. Emanuel 2 episodes, 1998
Carl Snell ...  J. W. (aged 5) 2 episodes, 1998
Maggie Steed ...  Mrs. Costello 2 episodes, 1998
Gary Vincent Gary Vincent ...  Photographer 2 episodes, 1998


The life of an Irish immigrant family in Australia in the second half of the 19th century.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


An Australian mini-series of hatred and tragedy, wealth and romance. See more »





Official Sites:

Umbrella Entertainment





Release Date:

29 March 1998 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

Ruoholinnojen kuninkaat See more »

Filming Locations:

Achill, Mayo, Ireland See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The title is derived from a complete line in the source novel which reads: "If it's kings we are, it's kings in grass castles that may be blown away in the wind." See more »

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User Reviews

A stirring tale to make all Australians feel good, or anybody else who has ever migrated.
9 June 2002 | by khatcher-2See all my reviews

I myself emigrated to Australia near 40 years ago and have very fond memories of the country; thus I do not pass up any opportunities of seeing Australian productions which come by here, usually on our regional Basque TV Channel.

Based on a novel of the same name (Corgi Books, 1967) written by a grand-daughter of the main protagonist of this story – Patsy Durack – the film narrates the hard life of some Irish peasants who fled the potato famine in 1853 and emigrated to Australia. However, on arrival in the land of promise, they soon found that life there was also going to be rather hard. However, they persevere and get their own spread `in the back of beyond' near Thargomindah (the name is changed in the film, can't think why) in the deep south west of Queensland. From extreme to extreme, the saga unrolls, beautifully filmed and sometimes really well acted, reaching its forseeable conclusion without too many problems.

The best was a very loveable David Ngoombujarra as Burrakin, aborigine who became Patsy Durack's lifelong friend.

From a rainy windy Galway, Western Eire, the film miraculously dumps us in the middle of the splendid scenery of the Blue Mountains, not far from Oberon I rather fancy, overlooking the majestic Kurragorang Valley. Later we see the great empty plains of south west Queensland, and a few views of the beautiful Kimberlies can also be seen. As I have said, some beautiful filming: sunsets and a few wild animals, well-reconstructed street scenes, billabongs – made me almost feel `home' sick!

There is some play on how aborigines were badly treated, thrown off their lands, but this theme was not very much gone into. However, on a recent trip to Australia I noticed that now these people run their own lands and the booming tourist business.

Whether this film is very genuinely a story of the hard lives the early immigrants led may be a little debatable.

Try to get a copy of Ernestine Hill's `The Territory' (Angus and Robertson) for a truly authentic and beautiful book about people opening up the interior of Australia, especially the north.

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