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Breakfast on Pluto

7.22 h 8 min200615
A Vibrant black comedy set in the 70's, Breakfast on Pluto follows the exploits of Patrick Braden, an endearing, witty, clever and deceptively tough young man, who has a penchant for dressing as a woman. With an astounding Golden Globe nominated performance from Cillian Murphy, this is a wonderfully surreal and magical tale that is funny, moving and poignant, and begs to be discovered.
Neil Jordan
Cillian MurphyEva BirthistleLiam Neeson
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Pathe Productions Limited
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4.5 out of 5 stars

506 global ratings

  1. 75% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 11% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 8% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 3% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United Kingdom

DaisyReviewed in the United Kingdom on 05 July 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
A seriously good movie!
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This for me is a wonderfully crafted film, from the robins pecking at the doorstep milk and illuminating the story with their comments, like a chorus, to the role reversal when Father Liam (Liam Neeson) gives his confession to Kitten (Cillian Murphy) through the viewing holes of her peep show - when Kitten goes to confessional she asks for her mother's address, and at the peep show, it is finally given to her. There is something about the brilliant portrayal of Patrick Kitten Braden that captures and evokes empathy for the transgender character, perhaps in that while she is very feminine, her birth gender is still present, slight "gamine" as she is in stature. I like how she has chosen her nickname not to be a cute cliche, but after an acolyte of Saint Patrick, Saint Cettin, who, according to her, sometimes wore a dress. Kitten loves stories, just as in the song which provides the title - "Living within all the dreams you can spin" - and her telling of her own life story, chapter by chapter, is spot on. From a young age, she has learned how to avoid the painful reality of her abandonment by actively taking nothing seriously in this "stupid serious world". We're reminded of this bigger world around her too, though, during the Troubles, when one childhood friend is killed by a bomb and another shot. As little Patrick is being scrubbed roughly by foster mum, he laughs through the pain, later described by the Father as "the kind of laughter that disguises tears". This was particularly poignant. But the fun in the story, her escapes from impossible scrapes with gunmen, police, bikers make you root for Kitten so that she might find contentment in her world. She seems innocent and gullible, but I see her as more complicated than that - she doesn't need or want to fit in with what her foster family, school, church expect of her, because she can't and so is true to herself. And that's to be admired.
9 people found this helpful
coraReviewed in the United Kingdom on 17 June 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Weirdly and Wonderfully Whimsical
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This is one of those rare films I can watch every now and then and which never fails to make me smile. Although the story of Patrick 'Kitten' Braden has all the ingredients of one of those depressing Irish dramas with misery heaped upon misery (an abandoned baby, a foster mother who takes the child in for the money not for love, a catholic priest, a school run by priests, a transgender youth, the IRA, homelessness, exploitation, an unplanned pregnancy, etc.), she tells it in such a manner that no matter what catastrophe befalls her or those around her, you aren't wondering so much if she'll get through it (you more or less know she will) but how. The episodic style of the film works well, making it possible to concentrate on the interesting and entertaining events in Kitten's life without the need to fill in all the gaps.

The cast is wonderful, with Cillian Murphy giving the performance of a lifetime in the lead, and such greats as Liam Neeson, Liam Cunningham, Brendan Gleeson (in a Wombles suit if you please), Stephen Rea, a very young Ruth Negga, and, in a short cameo, Dominic Cooper in supporting roles. Eamonn Owens, who played the title character in Neil Jordan's 'The Butcher Boy' returns as an IRA man, and punk rocker Gavin Friday appears as one of the men in Kitten's life. Alone the fun of seeing Murphy sing a duet with him up on stage, dressed in a glittering squaw outfit, is worth the price of the DVD. Apparently he really did manage to hit the high notes of the Nancy Sinatra part of 'Sand'.

The eclectic soundtrack of songs that would have been popular in the Ireland of the 1970s the film is set in, works wonderfully well. And this from someone who ordinarily wouldn't be caught dead listening to Joe Dolan or 'Honey'.

All in all this is a wonderfully entertaining film, and if you aren't looking for meaningful solutions to the social issues it touches on, but are willing to go with the whimsical approach, there is much to like about it. Watch it, let it make you smile, enjoy the wonderful costumes of the glittering (literally) Kitten character and the outrageousness of it all. Life's too short to take it all too seriously.

As to the DVD: I found it difficult to understand some of the dialogue when the actors speak in a very low voice, but with subtitles available this wasn't much of a problem. The extras include a commentary by director Neil Jordan and Cillian Murphy and featurette. Both are nice additions to the film. There are also a trailer, a photo gallery and a few extended scenes. Product reviewed: [[ASIN:B000ERVG16 Breakfast On Pluto [DVD] [2005]]].
4 people found this helpful
N. J. MejiaReviewed in the United Kingdom on 06 March 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
Surprisingly surreal, funny and deeply moving.
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Amazing film. Cillian Murphy shows was a class act he is. His portrayal of Kitten is memorable, not least for a couple of fabulous set pieces. Gotta watch this just for the cavorting wombles ( a nice cameo from Brendon Gleeson here too). The film also blends the realistic with flights of Kitten's fancy. Her secret agent fantasy is played hilariously by Murphy, and he looks too good in a skintight patent jumpsuit. The story follows Patrick Brady's coming of age journey from Ireland to London, in search of his mammy. Along the way he becomes Kitten, encountering a number of questionable love interests, including Gavin Friday, Stephen Frears and Bryan Ferry. We, like Kitten, are plunged into the 70s, navigating the partisan politics of The Troubles and the sugary androgenous pop scene of the time. A surreal mix but ultimately a ride. A brilliant film.
2 people found this helpful
PaulReviewed in the United Kingdom on 21 September 2019
3.0 out of 5 stars
Not the intended story
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This deviates quite widely from the book. The central character isn't half as dark as portrayed in McCabe's book, and certainly his relationship with his alleged father has been sanitised in order to attract (or at least not repel) a viewing audience. Now, I'm still not sure if this is a good or bad thing. It does make the film more acceptable but something of the character is lost as well as the integrity of what McCabe intended. In the book the central character commits a very rude, very wrude indeed act of revenge on his father, the priest. Still I guess the film is more digestible which is ironic given what happens in the book.
One person found this helpful
PatriciaReviewed in the United Kingdom on 30 April 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
One of the best movies I have ever watched ! Cillian Murphy is a genius actor!
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Reminiscent of The Crying Game, this is a story of one life totally out of sync with the rest of the world. Sad, inspiring, funny as hell, emotional and very emotive.

Cillian Murphy is an amazingly accomplished actor, to give so convincing a performance.

A very emotive movie that holds you and makes you run through the entire gamut of emotions.

In one word, Brilliant !
One person found this helpful
Mary BessenichReviewed in the United Kingdom on 20 August 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
A truly magnificent film with an outstanding performance from Cillian Murphy.
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Magnificent. Cillian Murphy has to stand as one of the greatest actors of our time. He is in a league all of his own. He is blessed with having an immediate presence on screen before he's even uttered a word. I have never seen a face that is so striking. The film speaks of truth and having the courage to be who you really are. The characters within the story are mainly kind, decent folk who lend a great deal of gentleness to this amazing film.
Trevor WillsmerReviewed in the United Kingdom on 08 June 2007
3.0 out of 5 stars
Overlong, unfocused and underachieving, yet somehow hard to dislike
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Despite some highly enjoyable moments, Neil Jordan's Breakfast On Pluto has to be counted among his sporadic failures. Working from another Patrick McCabe novel, this is no Butcher Boy. Following another maladjusted foundling at odds with the vigorous conformity of small-town life, this episodic cross dressing chronicle of Patricia Kitten Braden and "her" search for "her" mother and love in the Ireland and England of the 70s against a background of flared trousers, platform heels and IRA bombings is a much more optimistic tale. Relying on the kindness of strangers, Kitten's good nature even makes an unlikely guardian angel out of the cop who beats him up after a pub bombing in which s/he becomes the prime suspect. Yet despite the very different perspective, at times it almost feels like it's running through a checklist. Priests seducing their housekeepers? Check. Schoolboy priest baiting? Check. Mocking the paramilitaries until things get serious, serious, serious? Check. "I'm not a girl"? (One for the Jordan fans there) Check. Surreal flights of comic fancy to offset the tragedy and darkness? Check. Even the supporting cast feels like Jordan trotting out the repertory company of old favorites - along with Liam Neeson there's also the inevitable Stephen Rea, Ian Hart and Brendan Gleeson in a Womble suit. There's something just a little bit tired about it all.

It's a film that needs a strong, charismatic central performance to pull it all together, and Cillian Murphy's Kitten just doesn't quite work. He looks uncannily right for the part, with the kind of pansexual look you'd find in glam rock stars like Marc Bolan from the era if they'd gone that extra mile, but the voice is a real problem: aside from being so soft spoken that it's a good job the DVD comes subtitled to pick up what he's saying, it never convinces that there's a real person under the affectations and seems to leaves the wardrobe and makeup to do more of the work, resulting in a rather superficial performance. You observe the character but you don't care about her. Liam Neeson doesn't fare too well either, with only the latter scenes playing to his strengths as an actor and too many of his early ones emphasising his weaknesses. In many ways the film's real standout performances come from Gavin Friday's gay singer Billy Hatchett who Kitten charms right out of the closet and Ruth Negga as one of Kitten's loyal childhood friends.

As Breakfast On Pluto it ambles along in its overlong, unfocused way, it's hard to dislike - after all, how can you hate a film that uses a pair of gossipy robins as a Greek chorus? - but it's definitely a film that diminishes in the memory shortly after seeing it.
One person found this helpful
bee bear or be bare or beware!Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 09 February 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
Well, what a surprise!
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Cillian Murphy was good - and I suppose his high-pitched voice was OK for a time (and the time) but was irritating over a long period. I would think if it were done now, it would be a more natural voice.
All in all, I enjoyed this.
The surprise was because I didn't even know the film existed!
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