Breakfast on Pluto

The young Irish actor Cillian Murphy (28 Days Later, Red Eye) lights up the screen in Neil Jordan's lyrical but shallow take on Patrick McCabe's novel about a 1960s wild child in search of the mother who deserted him. The role is a feast for an actor — hell, Kitten is a cross-dressing hooker — and Murphy digs into Breakfast with gusto. The lad believes Father Bernard (Liam Neeson), the priest who found baby Kitten on the doorstep of his church in Tyreelin, Ireland, is his real dad. Jordan keeps the pace as jaunty as the pop soundtrack until Kitten flounces off to London, hooks up with a gay magician named Bertie, nicely played by Stephen Rea, and ts learning some harsh truths. In substance and style, the movie is more than a few tears short of Jordan's The Crying Game. But Murphy is an actor to watch. Even in heels.

From The Archives Issue 328: October 16, 1980