On The Edge (2001) – Cillian’s First Leading Role

It’s been a while since my last Cillian Murphy’s movie review, the last one was Red Eye. I have seen almost all his movies but I still haven’t written all the review yet…all in good time 🙂

I have been planning to write about On The Edge since early this year but something else always came out and delayed my review to be published. Last night was my third time viewing the movie. I am not crazy about this movie but I won’t say it’s boring either. The movie is quite interesting but honestly, I wouldn’t watch it more than once if the actor is not Cillian Murphy. On The Edge can be considered as Cillian’s first movie as a leading actor. The movie itself wrote ‘Introducing Cillian Murphy’.

On the Edge is a 2001 Irish film directed by John Carney. The story set on a 19 years old Jonathan Breech who was played by Cillian Murphy. It started with Jonathan’s father’s funeral. He acted as if he didn’t care with his father’s death but the truth was he was somehow devastated. Straight of the funeral, he bought cocaine, asked someone’s girlfriend to have sex and stole someone’s car. Instead of taking the girl to a hotel, he went to his brother’s house and took his father’s ashes. He dropped the girl in the middle of nowhere and decided to kill himself by jumping off the cliff with his father’s ashes strapped in the back seat of the stolen car.

However, faith said differently. Jonathan lived to see the next day with only a broken little finger. He was sent to a mental institution or what liked to refer as ‘Mad House’. He met Dr. Figure (Stephan Rea, this is the second time I see Cillian played with Rea) who found it a bit difficult to see through Jonathan’s rebellious act. He tended to contradict Dr.Figures analysis. He was far from being cooperative.

Jonathan: I know more about the business of suicide in my baby finger, than you do in all your years of training and Freud reading. I gurran-fuckin’-tee ya that.

In his therapy group, he met a girl named Rachel (Tricia Vessey) who he thought as cute girl. But Rachel was not as cute as he thought. She showed unusual behavior by getting excited when seeing blood. Jonathan also made friend with Toby (Jonathan Jackson). They often sneaked out of the institution in the middle of the night. Toby blamed himself for his brother’s death. Everyone in the group has tendency to kill themselves, Dr. Figure asked them to make a pledge not to kill themselves before New Year ’s Eve.

Dr. Figure: What would you do if you were allowed home for the afternoon?
Jonathan: [inhales] Get a decent cup of coffee then I’d chop me head off with a chainsaw.
Dr. Figure: Okay. Uh – uh, just one thing. I wanted to propose something. It’s like a pledge between doctor and patient. We nominate a day, like three weeks from now – like New Year’s Day – and you mustn’t harm yourself until that day. You have to stick to it. What do you think about that?
Jonathan: Yeah, I think it’s a fuckin’ ridiculous idea.

Each day, Jonathan seemed to be getting better with friends around him. But…this happy little ‘family’ didn’t last long. Toby did something he wasn’t supposed to.

Rachel Row: Why do you want to die?
Jonathan: I don’t want to die, I just don’t want to be alive.

It was really fun seeing Cillian as a troubled young man, he played his role really well. The story itself, in my opinion, was a typical mad house story with inpatient’s personal problems and somehow friendship helped their recovery. I really like the friendship between Jonathan and Toby. My favorite scene was when Jonathan defended Toby against a man who was so pissed at Toby during their bowling hour. His act of challenging the man to kill him had made him saw live in different way. His relationship with Rachel was not as interesting as his with Toby, in my opinion.

Like I said before, I like the movie but I won’t even watch it more than once if it’s not for Cillian Murphy. This is the kind of movie that has good message, beautiful story, great script and interesting to watch but not to watch over and over again kind of movie.

Cillian Murphy was EXTREMELY GORGEOUS in this movie. He was so young and so gorgeous. I thank God for creating such beautiful man to bring delight upon my eyes 😉 I put together some pictures of him below and will upload more in my tumblr account.

There is one thing I REALLY REALLY LIKE about Irish movies, tho I haven’t watch that many, is the music. All Irish movies I have seen have amazing choice of music. They really know how to spoil their audience’s ears. I want to see more Irish movies without Cillian in it but it wasn’t easy finding Irish movies here. I forced myself to find ones with Cillian.

Movie Details

Director : John Carney
Producer : Ed Guiney, Arthur Lappin, and Jim Sheridan
Screenplay : John Carney and Daniel James
Starring : Cillian Murphy, Tricia Vessey, Jonathan Jackson Stephen Rea
Release : 21 September 2001

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    1. Of course there is something else 😉 …not only good looking he is also very talented actor…tho not many can see that. Aaah such underated actor, but I think you know that already 😉
      It is interesting, you should give it a try Cas.

    1. Hahaha thankyou Kel. Honestly, I never like any actor like I like Cillian. I used to be so passionate at Keanu but it was still not like the way I feel at Cillian now.

  1. I hadn’t heard of this movie but it doesn’t sound bad at all. I think I might like it. I completely agree about the music in Irish movies. It’s often very, very good.

    1. I think you might like it, you got to see at least 3 different mental problems, quite interesting.
      Yaiii I am glad you agree with me. I have only watched less than 10 Irish movies and all have great music selection.

  2. I’ll see if i can stream this on netflix. And your devotion to Cillian is admirable to say the least…i’ve seen a few movies because of a actor or actress in it, but i don’t think i can rival your passion for Cillian in that aspect.

    Although i have come close with Deborah Ann Woll

    1. I actually have 7 actors I always watch no matter what their movies are about but it’s true that only Cillian is the one I am trying hard collect, as for other 6, I watch them if I can find them. I need to see this Deborah one day to know why you like her so much 🙂

      If you can finally watch this movie, I would love to hear your thought on it.

  3. seen this movie twice, liked it very much (and the ost also). seen almost all cillian movies and think he is one of the best actors alive.

    1. Hi Dany 🙂
      I agree on everything you have said 😉 too bad not many people can see how good of an actor he is as most people only see his Hollywood movies.

  4. Hello Novroz, I would like to thank you for your blog and especially your Cillian posts, as I have recently come to love this actor as much as you do, thanks to Peaky Blinders – and for the same reasons as you too – so gorgeous but also so talented, with this incredible capacity to really embody a character, including by changing physically and vocally, which I find very impressive. I’m sure one day he will receive the recognition he deserves.

    So any way, I have started to try and see old movies of his, and I saw On the edge and really liked it, more than you did actually. Perhaps it’s because, although I’m in my 40s, I’m still very much of a teen-ager inside… And Cillian already showed his great talent in this movie, although I think Disco Pigs and (strangely) Watching the détectives are, among the movies I have been able to watch, the ones in which he shows the more diverse talent (I haven’t been able to see Breakfast on Pluto though, which I understand may be his most impressive role, nor Peacock).

    So, please go on with your posts, and know that at least someone is as interested in reading them as you are interested in writing them (and forgive me for any error of grammar I can make, as I am French so English is not my primary language).

    Looking forward to read your next post 🙂

    1. Hi Lychee 🙂

      Thank you for the very enthusiast comment. I am always happy to meet another Cillian fans (hug)

      Don’t worry about your English, I am not a native so yours looks better than mine 😉

      You should really see Breakfast on Pluto…the movie really shows his amazing talent. Breakfast was the movie that turned me into a fan

      1. Hi Novroz,

        1) Sorry, I thought you were American (which shows how good I found your English was), now I see that you are Indonesian 🙂

        2) I would love to see Breakfast on Pluto, but it appears to be quite dificult to find it in France… How did you find it ?

        1. Thank you for the compliment…tho I am not that good, I still make grammatical errors 😉

          I can’t find most of Cillian Murphy movies here and importing DVD is too expensive for me…so I use online streaming or torrentz. I still buy original DVD when it’s available here

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