Wednesday, 25 November 2009

(500) Films of Empire - Day 71: Boyle-ing Point!

Today I will mostly be watching the films of Danny Boyle. Like another director, Curtis Hanson, Boyle is someone who doesn't want to be pigeonholed into a particular genre, as evidenced here with this selection of films; an apocalyptic thriller/horror, science fiction, and gritty drug comic drama.

456- 28 Days Later - 4 stars
Provokes much debate as whether or not it is a zombie movie; the Infected are just that, infected with a virus and therefore not the undead. Nevertheless, it did introduce the world to the notion of 'The Sprinter'; the speedy fast "zombie" that features in the remake of Dawn Of The Dead or Zombieland, as apposed to 'The Shuffler'; the slow, almost shambolic undead of the original Romero trilogy or the brilliant Shaun Of The Dead.
While the attacks of the Infected may provide the visceral scares, the true terror lies in the scenes of an abandoned London, one of the busiest cities in world completely deserted, and at the possibility of humanity destroying itself.
Managed to spawn a very rare thing, a great sequel in the form of 28 Weeks Later.

355 - Sunshine - 3 stars
After giving a boost to the British horror genre, Boyle did the same for the British science fiction genre, crafting a fantastic looking film on a budget of just $50 million. A fraction of what a Hollywood blockbuster would spend, although Duncan Jones trumped that by spending a mere $5 million on the magnificent Moon.
The multi-cultural crew of the Icarus II set out to reignite the dying Sun but as with all great sci-fi (Alien, 2001), their mission does not go to plan.
This is roughly 3/4 of a great movie but let down by a ending that goes a bit too Event Horizon (no further spoilers).
But why do they need a bomb to restart the Sun when they have Chris Evans (not that one) on board? He's the Human Torch! Surely he could fly into the sun and reignite it himself?!

316 - Trainspotting - 4 stars
One of the great opening scenes in cinema, with the thumping drums of 'Lust For Life' and the classic speech; "Choose life, choose a job, choose a career, choose a f*cking big television...", and with it produced one of the best and most important British films in years and a much needed boost to the UK film industry.
It's Ewan McGregor's definitive performance as Renton, our guide into the murky world of herion addiction in Edinburgh, in a difficult tale told with a bold visual flair that does not glamourise drug use (despite what The Daily Mail might have said).
Also produced the iconic poster that adorned every student halls of residence and between this film and Pulp Fiction, popularised the marketing of soundtracks as must have CDs.

Days remaining - 294 Films remaining - 389


  1. I enjoy Sunshine more than I should, I think it's due to the imagery and the excellent first 2 acts - agreed it goes downhill throughout but I love the first half alot. I do prefer it leaps and bounds over Slumdog Millionaire however... (Contraversial?)

  2. (Annoymous = @sam_clements)