Category Archives: Danny Boyle

Millions (2004)

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God doesn’t rob banks, all right? God does not rob banks.

— Damian Cunningham

Reverting back to his old ways, Danny Boyle tackled “the boy gets the money” genre in a family friendly film, Millions. This was a recommendation from a member from my Oscar Watchers group when I pose the question of what film of Danny Boyle’s should I see. This movie was too far-fetched for my liking.

Damian Cunningham (Alex Etel) is a precocious seven-year-old that moves to a new town with his older brother, Anthony (Lewis McGibbon) and his father, Ronnie (James Nesbitt).

He has the tendency to be fascinated by the patron saints. His imagination runs wild when he is visited by this saints.

Damian builds a fort in the backyard near some train tracks. One day when he is in his fort, a large bag rolls and crushes Damian’s fort. He opens up the bag to find hundreds of thousands worth of English pound notes that will be of no value when the Euro currency begins.

Anthony and Damian devise a plan to spend the money before the money is no good.

Danny Boyle usual tricks are in place here with the double speed and all that. It did not gel with the supposed whimsical nature of the story. I was bored to tears. This movie gave me a headache that I had to stop it. I did not care about the story. It was ridiculous. It was supposed to be an Aesop’s fable, but not. I just didn’t care about the movie at all.

Judgment: If you want to induce a headache, watch this movie.

Rating: **

28 Days Later… (2002)

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He was full of plans. Have you got any plans, Jim? Do you want us to find a cure and save the world or just fall in love and fuck? Plans are pointless. Staying alive’s as good as it gets.

— Selena

It has been years since laying eyes on 28 Days Later… Seeing it again last night, I realized I love it even more than the first time that I saw it.

Danny Boyle has an eye of turning the typical zombie movie genre on its head. He created something rather unique that elevated the genre as a whole to another level.

Jim (Cillian Murphy), a man wakes from a short coma finds himself the last man in London. The streets are empty, littered with trash, overturned cars and piles of dead bodies.

Jim wanders around the cityscape until he goes to a church where there are more dead bodies and the “infected” are. The infected are people that contracted a rage virus that broke out when a bunch of activists tried to free infected laboratory chimpanzees and the virus gets out. This could be an allegory to the AIDS epidemic.

He encountered more of the infected as Selena (Naomie Harris) and Mark (Noah Huntley) help out Jim by disposing of them with gas bombs, guns, baseball bats and machetes.

I enjoyed the endless amounts of blood and gore. It was humorous. It was tense and suspenseful like good horror movie should be. Boyle’s signature moves worked well here with the double speed shots, and the quick cuts.

This is a road trip movie that speaks to the survival of the human race. What happens when the world as you know it is gone forever? How can you survive? By any mean necessary.

Judgment: If you want to see a solid zombie flick that pushes the limits of the genre, check this movie out.

Rating: ****1/2

Sunshine (2007)

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So if you wake up one morning and it’s a particularly beautiful day, you’ll know we made it. Okay, I’m signing out.

— Capa

Deviating from his usual formula of “boy gets girl, boy gets money, boy is all right in the end” style of movie, Danny Boyle dipped his foot into the sci-fi genre by making Sunshine. Not to be confused with the Ralph Fiennes vehicle, Sunshine from 1999.

Never heard of this movie until a couple of film critics were suggesting this movie to watch. Watching it was an interesting experience that I wish had a better ending.

Roughly fifty years into the future, the Earth is in the middle of another Ice Age when the sun begins to die. A team of astronauts went out on a mission to revive the dying gas giant. The missions fails.

Seven years later, eight crew members of the Icarus II tries to finish what the crew of the Icarus failed to do. The captain Kaneda (Hiroyuki Sanada) made it his ultimate goal to re-ignite the sun and all costs.

One of the ships crew members, Trey (Benedict Wong) makes a disastrous mistake that sabotages the ultimate mission. They discover that the Icarus I is still floating near the sun. They want to rendezvous with it to get the necessary supplies to complete the mission.

Boyle’s infamous Dutch angles are present here. No idea why. There are a lot of sequences of some of the characters  in an observation deck staring directly at the sun. Why?

I enjoyed the first hour of the movie, when I finally understood what the hell was going on with the plot. It was very good, but the train jumped off the rails big time. The last thirty minutes of this flick transformed from a tense, sci-fi drama into Jason X all of a sudden. WTF! I cannot divulge what happens, but the movie completely lost me.

Judgment: If you want to see a person flesh torn off, this movie is for you.

Rating: ***1/2

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