The Mighty Celt

The Mighty Celt

Pearse Elliott (2005)

15 Certificate


Our Score
It says much for the bankability of co-stars Robert Carlyle and Gillian Anderson that they find themselves in this affable if underwhelming canine variation on Barry Hines's novel A Kestrel for a Knave. In fact, debuting writer/director Pearse Elliott's tale of a Belfast teenager's obsession with a discarded greyhound owes more to Ken Loach's film adaptation Kes than to the original book. Tyrone McKenna shows promise as idealistic youngster Donal, and there are plenty of Full Monty moments, too, as Carlyle's ex-IRA man has to face up to his past in seeking to start afresh with Kate (Anderson), an old flame and Donal's mum. Meanwhile, Ken Stott provides some effective villainy as the crusty trainer whose ruthless attitude to his dogs provokes a predictable (but still shocking) dénouement.


A 14-year-old develops a passion for greyhound racing, and gets a job as a kennel hand. When he strikes up a close friendship with one particular dog, the owner promises to give the animal to him - provided it wins three races first. Meanwhile, the boy's mother struggles to cope with the return of a face from her past. Drama, starring Tyrone McKenna, Gillian Anderson, Robert Carlyle and Ken Stott.

Cast & Crew

Kate Gillian Anderson
O. Robert Carlyle
Good Joe Ken Stott
Donal Tyrone McKenna
Spacer John Travers
Off-licence salesgirl Alison Finnegan
Real IRA man Mark McCavanagh
Joyrider kid Bernard Manning
Director Pearse Elliott
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: MetrodomeGuidance: Contains swearing.Available on: DVD