The Mighty Celt

Director: Pearse Elliott

A young boy’s friendship with a greyhound provides the starting point for this heartfelt tale about people coming out of the shadow of Northern Ireland’s past. In an act of compassion, the young Donal (Tyrone McKenna) saves a doomed greyhound from the often-cruel trainer Joe (Ken Stott). Naming the animal ‘The Mighty Celt’, Donal proves a good companion for the animal, turning it into a champion racer, much to Joe’s disgust. This anger proves to be a flashpoint for old grievances to emerge, as Donal’s mother Kate (Gillian Anderson) begins a relationship with ex-IRA fighter ‘O’ (Robert Carlyle), a man despised by Joe. A potentially grim story, these painful events are relieved by the film’s uplifting refusal to abandon the hope of Donal’s youthful decency bringing events to an affirming conclusion.

Age: 15

Best International Actress (Gillian Anderson) Award at the 3rd Irish Film and Television Awards 2005

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