Danny Boyle Film Club

edited March 2018 in General Movies & TV Posts: 4,382
Like many here, I'm refreshing my memory on Danny Boyle's films.

Last night I saw T2 and was mostly very impressed. The first Trainspotting is an absolute classic, but there is something slightly shaggy about the storytelling this time around. The sequel is less witty, funny and pointed as the first film. But there is an undeniable charm in seeing these characters once again. In particular, the scenes with Jonny Lee Miller and Ewan McGregor have such authenticity to them and Ewan Bremner gives a heartbreaking performance.

There are moments where the film both rejects nostalgia whilst simultaneously embracing it whole-hardheartedly. Boyle is clearly trying to show he's not a filmmaker bogged down by the past and wants to be new and inventive. However, there are many self-serving and indulgent beats that feel a tad self-congratulatory.

Boyle's tics and kinetic style are in full-force and the film truly captures you in it's hallucinatory and hypnotic manner. Though there are a few beats that do become a little stylised to the point of nausiam. Boyle's ADHD sensibility can be a little jarring at points, with the film being too eager to please. However, when it works it really works. There is a terrific segment at the end during a chase scene where Boyle expertly uses action, music, visuals and drama to create a brilliantly tense and exciting sequence. I was really caught in the film's spell in that moment. Anyone worried that he can't direct action need not worry.

So T2 is admirable and entertaining mess. The film is a bit like an old raver who still turns up to the party long after they should have gone home. But I think that may be the point. T2 is a pleasant comment on the pains of time and the joy/misery of nostalgia. We won't talking about it in 20 years but its a pleasant enough companion piece to the original.

I really liked it.


  • edited March 2018 Posts: 2,107
    I also watched both of them back to back yesterday. Not because Boyle is supposedly the next Bond director, but because I had ment to watch them both back to back ever since I saw Trainspotting was on Netflix and T2 was on Viaplay.

    I liked both movies. Hadn't seen the new one and it might've been yesrs since I last saw the first one. Glad some directors can keep the continuation together after 20 years had passed.
  • Posts: 12,724
    I really liked T2. I thought making it a film about nostalgia was a great approach to a sequel being done so many years later. And how great was this bit

    Wasn't as good as the first but the first is a classic and there aren't many sequels that are as good as the original. I thought was a worthy sequel.

    Shallow Grave might be my favourite Boyle film although 28 Days and Trainspotting are definitely up there. He's one of my favourite directors so I'm really excited at the thought of him doing Bond. Apart from Campbell returning for CR, this will be the first time in my lifetime that the director announcement has genuinely excited me.

    I wouldn't mind him bringing along some actors he's worked with in the past either. I can picture Dev Patel as an assistant to Q who actually finds Bond's taking the piss funny. And I've been wanting Christopher Eccleston as a Bond villain for years.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 21,988
    Danny Boyle made one of my favourite horror films: 28 Days Later.

    Danny Boyle made one of my favourite coming of age films: Trainspotting.

    Danny Boyle made one of my favourite sci-fi films: Sunshine.

    Will he make one of my favourite Bond films...?
  • M_BaljeM_Balje Amsterdam, Netherlands
    edited March 2018 Posts: 4,182
    I have those:

    The Beach, 28 Days Later and Sunshine on dvd.
    127 Hours as BD /Dvd combopack and Trance on BD, both i stil haven't watched it.

    All those movies are from Fox, quistion is wil this mean MGM / Fox wil make Bond 25 like there did Die Another Day.

    I watched Sunshine on dvd 13 days after Skyfall in cinema and have almoost same screentime as QOS. Like 28 days (rent it in 2002 before i rewatched in 2013) later there happend almoost nothing with disapointed conclussion.

    Slumdog need a new BD release in The Netherlands, because of poor audio. I haven't seen complete movie, but from the fames promotionapromotional footage i have seen, it have a lot of energy. In the beginning i thaught Anil Kapoor whas real host of indian version of that quize . Very nice there cast him later for mi4. And Dev Patel in the mean time i collect two other movies with.

    You can say from Slumdog and 127 Hours that it get very good promotion. Mabey a bit overrated sometimes but not with so much hate as tdk or skyfall.

    With exeption of Trance, my overall idea that Danny Boyle making movies where chacters are on there own/take distence from. Dicaprio on a Beach and in woods and emty London in 28 days later and drugs user in Trainspotting. Something that i realy like from QOS and Spectre. Overall i am not fan of feels very empty skyfall moments.
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,669
    Shallow Grave - Not watched it
    Trainspotting - Not watched it
    A Life Less Ordinary - Not watched it
    The Beach -Not watched it
    28 Days Later - watched it
    Millions - Not watched it
    Sunshine - Not watched it
    Slumdog Millionaire - Not watched it
    Alien Love Triangle - Not watched it
    127 Hours - watched it
    Trance - Not watched it
    Steve Jobs - Not watched it
    T2 - Not watched it

    I think I've proved my credentials.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 38,233
    I've thoroughly enjoyed every one of his film's I've seen, but I wasn't a fan of Slumdog Millionaire sadly. I could use a rewatch of Trance, I remember that being one trippy thrill ride.
  • Posts: 2,107
    Shallow Grave - Not watched it
    Trainspotting - watched it
    A Life Less Ordinary - Not watched it
    The Beach -watched it
    28 Days Later - watched it
    Millions - Not watched it
    Sunshine - watched it
    Slumdog Millionaire - seen it
    Alien Love Triangle - Not watched it
    127 Hours - not seen
    Trance - Not watched it
    Steve Jobs - watched it
    T2 - watched it

  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    Posts: 9,117
    Shallow Grave - Excellent thriller with lots of twists and turns and some great dark humour. 8/10

    Trainspotting - Bona fire classic. 9.5/10

    A Life Less Ordinary - Not watched it.

    The Beach - Gets a a fair bit of flak but I always enjoy it. 7/10

    28 Days Later - Good first half but I lose interest as it goes on (but then I find nothing more dull than a zombie film). 5/10

    Millions - Not watched it.

    Sunshine - Fabulous high concept and looks amazing on a minuscule budget. Loses its way a tad in the third act but shows he can do action. 8.5/10

    Slumdog Millionaire - Its fashionable to slag it off as being overrated but it's still a very decent watch. 7/10

    Alien Love Triangle - Not watched it.
    127 Hours - Solid enough although possibly a bit dull. 6/10

    Trance - Not watched it.

    Steve Jobs - Fine performance by Fassbender but would have preferred a straight bio rather than the weird structure. 6/10

    T2 - Shows Mendes how to do fan service correctly. Just the right amount of nostalgia and new stuff. Knew he couldn't outdo the first one so didn't really try to. A worthy sequel. 7.5/10

  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,669
    Oh boy. I started something.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 21,988
    Slumdog! Yes, how can I forget! I really do like that film. It's original, moving and very much its own thing. I truly appreciate Boyle's efforts there.
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Quantum Floral Arrangements: "We Have Petals Everywhere"
    Posts: 28,651
    Boyle is one of those directors that I've only seen bits of, not enough to make an impression, but he is certainly interesting at the very least (that could be bad interesting, or good interesting, mind). No matter what my view will be when I see more, he seems to be one of the most versatile directors around and is very much in the auteur mold. I've said this before, but if people thought Mendes was too wild an auteur, if Boyle gets the gig they've seen nothing yet. It could stand to be one of the most bizarre and un-Bondian Bond films we've seen that didn't echo so much of Bond's hallmarks as Mendes was able to faithfully do. That isn't a criticism either, just an observation/prediction/feeling I get if Boyle is attached to Bond 25.

    One Boyle film I do want to see very soon is Trance, as it seems closer to what I'd expect from a Bond film than most of Boyle's work. It has a detective sort of twist to it, but also a very peculiar and ominous feeling to it that I'd also expect a Bond film to have. That Boyle has tasked his usual screenwriter for the Bond script is interesting, but as with the director himself I don't know enough about the writer to judge whether he is good or bad for Bond.

    So for right now I'm neutral on where Boyle is concerned. But he certainly wouldn't be my first or second choice either.
  • Fire_and_Ice_ReturnsFire_and_Ice_Returns The Bright Side of the Road.
    edited March 2018 Posts: 19,403
    The Trainspotting films and Shallow Grave are excellent, being a Sci Fi fan I have watched Sunshine the most from Boyle's films. After watching Trainspotting 2 and some of the things Boyle does in that film my opinion has changed about him directing a Bond film, I think Boyle could surprise us and make something memorable.
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Quantum Floral Arrangements: "We Have Petals Everywhere"
    Posts: 28,651
    The film would certainly have style and a unique touch, I don't think that can be denied. But that's what being an auteur comes down to, a distinct identity.
  • Posts: 12,724
    I think the difference between Boyle and Mendes will come down to background. They're both auters, but Mendes is a posh Cambridge graduate while Boyle is proudly working class (which also has me interested in how he'll tackle the snobby imperialist side).

    I also think it'll be a lot more grounded, if that's the right word? I'm sure it'll be visually distinctive and it might be quite thematic and character focused (but then again it might not be, he's done a couple of straightforward thrillers as well) but I don't think we'll get anything as pretentious/arty the Tennyson scene or "the dead are alive". I think the character stuff and the themes will come more from what the characters do than psychoanalysis. A good example is the scene in T2 where Begbie's reliving his the glassing scene from the first one and thriving off the nostalgia of his glory days. There isn't a character commenting on how he's living in the past, the film just shows it.

    His comments on why he's a Fleming/Bond fan make me think it'll be a bit more story driven as well to be honest. Didn't he say something about how he liked how gritty it was, how it was just a world of sex and violence or something? Mendes was interested in exploring his origins, making a film about mothers and then brothers. Boyle's comments make me think it'll be more about Bond as a spy than as a person. He's quite liberal as well and he's working class so we might get sort of a postmodern take on that, Bond caught up in some sort of dodgy/dirty business that the government are involved in.
  • edited March 2018 Posts: 16,461
    I'm curious what to expect with Boyle. Have never seen any of his films, and thinking if I should keep it that way until we see the result of B25.

    The "gritty/a world of sex and violence" comment is actually the thing that interest me the most, as far as his own comments go. Very to the point the way he describes his experience of the books (even though it might have been a quick comment in an interview, or whatever).

    On that note; did Mendes ever comment on Bond's background/origins before they started with SF? Or did we get any hints as to what he was planning at that time?
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,669
    I can't help but notice the title of this thread is Danny Boyle film club. Are you going to have one?
  • edited March 2018 Posts: 4,382
    I can't help but notice the title of this thread is Danny Boyle film club. Are you going to have one?

    It's more of a space to talk about Boyle's films and your opinions on them. If someone actually wanted to arrange a film club, that could be fun.

    In the meantime, I suggest everyone watch this terrific documentary in which Danny Boyle teams up with Banksy to stage a nativity play in Bethlehem. It's pretty great, not only funny and charming, but also quite tragic and dehumanising in the way it tackles its subject matter. It's not made by Boyle, but you do get to see his working process and how he approaches ideas. The man is a fountain of enthusiasm and has a truly infectious spirit.

    The documentary has made me more excited about Bond 25.

    Boyle is an endlessly creative force who is constantly looking to challenge himself. I think we're in for a treat with Bond 25.
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Quantum Floral Arrangements: "We Have Petals Everywhere"
    Posts: 28,651
    Just to interject, Boyle must first get the job. We'll have to see if EON like what he and Hodge produce in the next few months.
  • edited March 2018 Posts: 12,724
    He was offered a knighthood after he did such a great job with the opening ceremony but turned it down. So I do think we might see a sort of anti establishment Bond film where the whole "for Queen and country" thing gets challenged a bit, kind of the opposite of SF. Maybe a story where Bond is sent on a mission that's morally sketchy, benefitting the government but not much else, and he's torn between doing his job and doing what he thinks is right. Could even end the Craig era with the TMWTGG ending (I'm imaging Bond exposing the dirty business by the end and being offered a knighthood because of that). Don't know how well a film like that would sit on here but I'd be all for it.
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Quantum Floral Arrangements: "We Have Petals Everywhere"
    edited March 2018 Posts: 28,651
    I'm certainly interested to see what the "great idea" Boyle and Hodge have is all about. Because you're not going to hire Boyle and get a by the numbers movie; his auteur nature and very unique style seem to prohibit that. So I think we could end up getting what the Craig era has been all about, an entry that continues to reinvent or do things with a spin that we're not accustomed to seeing played with in the series. Or a film that explores ground we've not seen before that is driven by Boyle's own creative interests. I'm certainly more intrigued than I would be if it was a journeyman director being discussed. Because we've seen those kinds of films and only now are we seeing true creative forces getting their hands on Bond again with more ambitions than just following orders. These kinds of directing choices excite me.

    I do like your TMWTGG suggestion too, @thelivingroyale. Ending the film openly but with a dubiousness about Bond's life and future would be an interesting way to close it, and it would fit the very introspective and questioning Bond Craig's interpretation has been from day one. That would keep it very much in touch with Fleming's character, and end it how I'd expect. That being, Bond resigning himself to fate and his life as a spy until he dies or is killed. No more questioning.
  • Posts: 5,422
    I've just watched TRANCE last night, a pretty good indicator of Boyle. Stylish thriller with a good cast. Worth a look if you haven't seen it.
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Quantum Floral Arrangements: "We Have Petals Everywhere"
    Posts: 28,651
    Glad you enjoyed it, @Mathis1. That's the Boyle film I want to see most.
  • Posts: 19,339
    This was in Esquire yesterday :

    Here's What Danny Boyle Will Bring To Bond 25.

    It's been announced that Danny Boyle is planning to direct the next instalment of the James Bond franchise. He's working on a script with his frequent collaborator John Hodges and he's aiming to start at the end of the year.
    "We've got an idea, John Hodge, the screenwriter, and I have got this idea, and John is writing it at the moment. And it all depends on how it turns out. It would be foolish of me to give any of it away," he told Metro US.

    This will almost certainly be Daniel Craig's very last outing as Bond so we're expecting some sort of finale. But what else will the Trainspotting and Slumdog Millionaire director bring to the 007 franchise? Here are the things you can expect


    Danny Boyle is emotional when he wants to be. And if this really is Craig's last, Boyle is surely going to make us feel it. Millions, Slumdog Millionaire and 127 Hours all had great big emotional beating hearts so we reckon he'll be able to squeeze a few tears out of us for this.

    Especially if this movie follows the rough arc of the books On Her Majesty's Secret Service and You Only Live Twice, as we suspect it might. At the end of SPECTRE Bond opts not to execute Blofeld (Christoph Waltz), who we discover was behind all the plots in the last three films, instead leaving him to be arrested. He then exits with Léa Seydoux's Madeleine Swann. So it's a relatively happy ending in Bondian terms.

    For a finale it would make sense for Swann to be killed off, leaving Bond on a path of vengeance. Seydoux hasn't been confirmed for a return and she has another project planned but that wouldn't rule out a small part for her


    It's Bond, so obviously there's going to be action. But we'd expect it to be the kind of frenetic, close up, high-energy action Boyle brought to Trainspotting, Shallow Grave and Trance.


    Boyle grew up in a working-class Catholic family and his creative career began with the Joint Stock theatre company, who were often seen as a socialist collective.

    Boyle directed the wonderful opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympics and was offered a knighthood for doing so which he turned down, saying (to Radio Times via The Huffington Post):

    "It's just not me. I also thought it was wrong, actually.

    "You can make these speeches about 'this is everybody's work, blah blah blah'. And you've got to mean it, and I did mean it, and it is true, and it's the only way you can carry on something like that: through the efforts of all the people. I don't know whether I'll ever get invited back to the Palace."

    All this is to say, then, that there is every chance his Bond will feel political and we wouldn't be surprise if some Trump-era commentary makes it in. He's not a fan of the US President and told The Sydney Morning Herald of the Trump era:

    "It will be very interesting to see how his time emerges in culture. That will start to emerge quite soon." Well, indeed – and here's his chance.


    Boyle's 'Bond girls' are going to be progressive. When he was asked if Bond Girls could be depicted in a different light in the #MeToo and Time's Up era, Boyle told Page Six:

    "You write in real time. You acknowledge the legacy of the world of Bond and you write in the world – but you also write in the modern world as well."

    So maybe this one won't have a scene of Bond seducing a grieving widow on the day of her husband's funeral (a husband who Bond in fact killed)?


    Danny Boyle's soundtracks are massively integral to his movies. He likes to use existing songs because of their history and because "they inter-breathe with the material you're using, and I always love that," he said to an audience at Tribeca according to BBC America.

    Soundtracks in Bond movies are rare but not completely unprecedented – 'London Calling' was in Die Another Day for example.

    He's more likely to work with a composer, though he's tried that before... He told Indiewire: "I've tried a few times. I worked with Angelo Badalamenti, who was a fantastic composer, on The Beach, but I couldn't really give him the film and I've apologised to him. There was a very important theme in the film where the characters come across the beach and he wrote this lovely theme for it and I didn't use it in the end. I used 'Porcelain' by Moby because it was a track."

    However he uses music then, it's going to be key.

    There are certain characteristics common to all Bond movies but we're hoping Barbara Broccoli gives him enough free rein to make it his own.

    Bond 25 will open in the US on 8 November, 2019. In the UK, it's likely to be the end of October.

  • Posts: 4,541
    I have wondered if the next Bond will be the first to use "off the shelf" tracks?
  • Posts: 19,339
    patb wrote: »
    I have wondered if the next Bond will be the first to use "off the shelf" tracks?

    If any director would do it,then it would be Danny Boyle.

  • edited March 2018 Posts: 684
    barryt007 wrote: »
    patb wrote: »
    I have wondered if the next Bond will be the first to use "off the shelf" tracks?

    If any director would do it,then it would be Danny Boyle.
    I'm quite excited by the thought of Boyle at the helm, but I'm not sure I could follow him down this path.

    P.S. Might be a fun idea for a thread actually -- "Rescore a Bond film using shelf tracks."

    We're all in agreement certainly that the manhunt section of OP would need to be the Baltimora classic "Tarzan Boy"?
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,669
    Strog wrote: »

    P.S. Might be a fun idea for a thread actually -- "Rescore a Bond film using shelf tracks."

    Do it. Make that thread.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 38,233
    Interesting write-up. I still haven't seen Trainspotting, does anyone have some links to any action sequence in that to give me an idea of what we might be in store for?
  • Posts: 4,382
    I got around to watching Shallow Grave last night.


    It was something of a mixed mag for me. The film is effectively a mesh of a 90s British independent comedy with an acerbic Coen Brother film. It’s mostly quite entertaining but it never truly comes together.

    The big issue is the characters. Fro the second they are introduced, they are all unlikeable and loathsome yuppies who are quite difficult to spend 90 minutes with. Furthermore, they are hardly developed in the slightest and are mostly presented as crude misanthropes. Therefore, it’s rather hard to invest in the story. The film is clearly indebted to Hitchcock, but unlike that filmmaker, Boyle fails to make the audience a co-conspirator in the crime, as we never truly understand the motivations of the wafer-thin characters. The later third of the film is the strongest, as Boyle is clearly more in his element dealing with paranoia, betrayal and lust.

    However, the film has a lot of style and confidence behind the camera. Boyle directs the film with such personality and imbues the story with atmosphere and mood. Boyle’s compositions are often painterly and the shots within the apartment are reminiscent of Edward Hopper and Lucian Freud.


    One aspect of Boyle’s filmmaking I adore is use of colour and sound and together these elements are on magnificent display in Shallow Grave. For those who may find Boyle’s energetic filmmaking a tad OTT, Shallow Grave is a nice introduction as the filmmaker hasn’t overdeveloped his tics yet.

    John Hodge’s script is a little underdeveloped at times, but the dialogue is so sharp and witty that it deserves special mention.

    I found the whole affair a tad slight. However, it’s a commendable debut.

  • j_w_pepperj_w_pepper By the powers *in*vested in me by this parish, I hereby do commandeer this message board
    Posts: 7,106
    Just to get my Boyle experience so far into the correct thread, I recently watched four of them (but needed a break before any of the remaining), leaving my impression on the "Last movie you watched" thread as follows:


    I still have 28 DAYS LATER, TRANCE,127 HOURS and T2 on BD for the follow-up.
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