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On the Edge
Format: DVD|Change
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on August 25, 2009
Every once in a while, a film comes along with a common subject that is fashioned differently and feels like a breath of fresh air. 2001 Irish film "On the Edge" is one of these movies.

The adorable Cillian Murphy, (Batman Begins), stars as Jonathan, a young man with a carefree, non-committal attitude towards life. He has just lost his father and, after a night of debauchery, tries to commit suicide by driving his car off of a cliff with his father's ashes in the back seat. Keeping with the light humor displayed throughout the story, though, Jonathan lives and his only wound is a broken pinky finger. Because he tried to kill himself, he is offered the choice of a prison sentence or admission to a mental hospital. He chooses the mental hospital.

At the hospital, which Jonathan clearly states he is treating as a vacation and nothing more, he is coached along by a psychologist, Dr. Figure, played by Stephen Rea, who ends up helping him deeply despite his first impression of the doctor. Jonathan attends a group therapy session and ends up making friends with Toby, (Jonathan Jackson), another young man with a dark secret and Rachel, (Tricia Vassey), whom Jonathan immediately fancies but who creeps him out a bit with her turn-on of blood.

Over the course of the film, you can see how the bonds between these three people are deepened, with Dr. Figure fleshing out the picture and helping Jonathan despite his protests. Toby harbors a crush on Rachel, which becomes more apparent when he writes a poem for her. Jonathan defends Toby when he almost ends up in a violent fight at a bowling alley and Jonathan almost ends up paying for it. This will be the first time that Dr. Figure steps in an tries to teach Jonathan that he needs to start valuing his own life, too. Jonathan will learn that lesson by the end of the film, though, when his love for Rachel grows and, after a tragic circumstance, her parents take her out of the hospital. Jonathan is miserable and worried and in the end, Dr. Figure helps him to achieve the one thing he desparately needs to do.

The acting in this film is rich, especially from Jonathan Jackson who is an American actor but flew to Ireland to make this film and took on the accent in an uncanny fashion. Cillian Murphy is excellent as always, as is Stephen Rea, and the story is interesting enough to keep your attention. It is sort of like "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" meets a young adult drama, but without a lot of the melodramatic acting that usually comes along with it. Plus, the soundtrack is a nice boost, starting out right up front with "1979" by the Smashing Pumpkins and includes "Alright" by Supergrass, "Please Forgive Me" by David Gray, and "Is She Weird?" by the Pixies, among other great songs.

If you were impressed with Cillian Murphy's performance as the Scarecrow in Batman Begins, you should definitely check out this film. And even if you have no idea who he is, this is a charming film that takes place in psycho-therapy but doesn't make the whole film about that concept. It is more of a focus on human behavior and relationships and what leads us to do what we do.
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on March 15, 2016
What an excellent experience. Quality customer service and product sold, the order came very quickly. I highly recommend buying from Neely's Niche! This movie is fantastic, Cillian Murphy (Batman Begins) Stephen Rea (The Crying Game) Great actors, an interesting, realistic and respectful portrayal of those who struggle with mental illness and or trauma and their relationships, therapy, survival and loss, drama mixed with sardonic witty Irish humour, great music, one line of Gaelic and...Awesomeness!
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on June 11, 2013
Cillian Murphy has been in Red Eye, Disco Pigs, and even the Dark Knight Trilogy. With his smooth voice and penetrating blue eyes, I expected a lot when I read about this movie in which Murphy's character (SPOILER ALERT) tries to commit suicide after his father dies. He's then taken to a therapy session in which the other members have tried suicide as well, and failed. through this movie, there becomes a tangled love story in which two people love the same girl, and I think Murphy is in his game. When this movie is watched, the audience can't expect a lot of WOW happening because the plot itself is so down to earth. No time bombs, no plane threats, and not even a Batman but still, this movie is worth watching even to feel a little homey.
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on June 12, 2017
Great movie , very touching and sad , with humor and love
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on February 5, 2007
Cillian Murphy, Tricia Vessey and Jonathan Jackson are very convincing in their roles as tormented souls who have failed to achieve the precarious balance that most humans find that keeps them most of the time away from the brink of desolation that young people find themselves peering over, as shown so well by the lens in the last sequence of "On the Edge". What brings them to this "brink" - and what saves them from it - are the mysteries that those who delve in the dark, murky waters of human depression and mental health find. This movie has explored, and not so deeply as to crush the viewer in morbid thought, these things and provided both tragedy and hope, all in a beautifully written and well-performed script.

While Stephen Rea is anything but dynamic in his role, his seemingly single dimension is actually a statement to the fact that far more often than not, there is nothing that can be done but to give these folks a little time to decide to try to live -- another day.
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on July 24, 2012
I actually happened to come across this movie by mistake while I was looking for another movie's trailer, with a similar title, on youtube. But, I did come across it and decided to watch the preview for this movie. I HAD to see this movie after watching the preview. It is definately a good movie. And I love Cillian Murphy in it, I don't think they could of found anyone better. Though it is a bit of a sad movie, its one worth watching. Maybe even watching twice for.
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on August 31, 2005
Cillian Murphy is not a new face to acting (well, at least, outside of Hollywood) and with this movie, you will understand what Mr. Murphy has in store in future films. He can truly act, even in a movie that may be slim of plot and writing. He takes what he is given and runs with it beautifully. He plays a suicidal young man who often contemplates what life holds for him as he stays in a mental institution. While there he meets two fellow troubled young people and through them he manages to find what life may be all about. A good cast, good soundtrack and an okay plot makes this film quite enjoyable.
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on September 25, 2005
The movie may be generally thought of as a drama, but it has a lot of comedic elements. On the Edge has a beautiful way of dealing with serious issues such as mental health and emotional dependency.

All of the actors and actresses delivered outstanding performances; you would think that Cillian Murphy had been in movies his entire life. It's amazing that this film is virtually unheard of in the states.

Simply put, it's a fantastic film, and I'm glad that I purchased it.
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on April 7, 2014
This is a great movie - basically "Girl, Interrupted," but funnier and Irish. The DVD came in perfect condition, and shipping was very quick. All in all a great product!
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on August 18, 2005
Daring, humourous, and extremely emotional body of work about people and life. Murphy, Rhea, Vessey, and Jackson deliver a beautiful performance. You have to watch for yourself. Keeps you wondering enough about the lives of these characters to keep you watching. Had me teary eyed at the end, though I may be slightly biased b/c I love (thus far) the work Cillian Murphy does in general. Nice Soundtrack.
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