Danny boyle He is not only one of the most talented directors of his generation, but also one of the most versatile. This can be seen in a review of his filmography, made up of films of all kinds, ranging from thriller to romance and through science fiction. All of them, in addition, conceived with elements that make them unique within their respective genres. Add to this his extra-cinematic efforts, such as his participation in the brand new opening ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics and his patronage of the HOME contemporary art center in Manchester.
Here’s a tally of all Danny Boyle movies, which one is the best?
The beach (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2000)
What promised to be Danny Boyle’s great consolidation turned out to be the biggest disappointment of his entire career. On paper, the premise of a young man whose journey to an exotic eastern destination is hampered by a series of strange events sounds repetitive at best. In its translation to the screen, the story is made chaotic by a disastrous mix of elements that include North American pop culture adorned by a young Leonardo DiCaprio, rather banal philosophical and existential reflections, in addition to many stereotypes. The latter is among the most prominent aspects of the plot, to the extent that the clear allusions to the so-called good savage continue to be the subject of debate more than twenty years after its premiere. The vision of the film has improved slightly with the passage of time – it is increasingly common to hear that it is a thriller, if not brilliant, at least redeemable -, but it has not prevented it from continuing to be considered the weakest link in the British work .
Lives without rules (Dir. Danny Boyle, 1997)
Danny Boyle’s foray into romantic cinema went down in history as the first major stumble of his career. Perhaps the situation would have been different if the Briton had opted for a slightly more conventional film and would have made the most of its stellar duo composed of Ewan McGregor and Cameron Diaz, whose performances are not only the most redeeming of the film, but also reaped quite acceptable comments from the public and critics. However, his efforts to break the genre schemes with a celestial narrative base, composed of angels disappointed in the sentimental misery of humans and who decide to try their fortunes with an unlikely partner, resulted in a plot unable to define its direction and intentions. All this enhanced by a visual style that at times was chaotic, typical of a filmmaker in search of the necessary maturity to achieve his distinctive stamp.
Yesterday (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2018)
Although the presence as a screenwriter of Richard Curtis – nominated for an Oscar for the script of Four Weddings and a Funeral (2004) – suggested that Yesterday was aimed at the romantic comedy, the direction of Danny Boyle resulted in a clear effort to emulate what was done in I would like to be a millionaire (2008). A fantastic plot that explores a world that never knew the music of The Beatles and that clashes squarely with a harsh criticism of capitalism. It left memorable moments – impossible not to be moved by John Lennon’s reflections – but struggled to find the balance between drama, romance and comedy, which resulted in a film inconsistent in its aspirations. Even so, it is worth seeing, more in search of enjoyment than reflection, also highlighting its wonderful soundtrack courtesy of the legendary Liverpool Quartet.
Sunshine: Solar Alert (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2007)
Cinema has turned to space on countless occasions, either in search of knowledge, of answers about our origins or of measures to guarantee subsistence. Such is the case of Sunshine who embarked on a mission that aims to reactivate the dying sun. The influence of titles such as 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), Solaris (1972) and Alien (1979) is palpable in the tension that surrounds the crew, not only because of the danger of their own destiny, but also because of the failure of the crew. ship that preceded him and the awareness that a failure will be catastrophic for all humanity. A load that results in a series of fascinating reflections on our own existence. It was able to position itself among the great classics of the genre, but it collapsed in a third act that left the deepening behind to opt for a slasher whose only differentiation was to be located in its cosmic nature.
In a trance (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2013)
Danny Boyle has always had a weakness for the thriller, but far from conforming to pre-established formulas, he has always sought a way to give them elements that make them unique. Such is the case of En trance, in which an artistic theft and an effort to recover a missing painting through hypnotic therapy lead through a plot full of twists and turns until its last moments. This allows it to function within its genre, but it is insufficient to excel in the work of its director. This is because the director focuses his efforts on the complexity of the script so much that he neglects symbolic, human and even visual elements that have always characterized and enhanced his filmography over the years. The result is an effective but forgettable tape.
Grave at the ground level (Dir. Danny Boyle, 1994)
Three friends discover that their new roommate has died, leaving behind a hefty sum of cash, what to do about it? Danny Boyle raises this question in his debut feature which, clearly influenced by the work of Alfred Hitchcock, is intended to delve into the darker side of human nature. If the objective is not specified, it is largely due to the poor treatment of the characters, because far from delving into the complex actions of people who are capable of betraying their own principles in the face of ambition, the film is limited to one-dimensionality, what which results in an unbelievable plot and loss of interest as the minutes go by. Even so, the film has achieved a tenuous cult status thanks to Boyle’s ability in a genre as challenging as thriller and with which he made it very clear that he had the potential to become one of the best directors of his time. The premise was fulfilled, which has allowed the legacy of Tumba al ras de la tierra to increase over the years.
T2 Trainspotting: Life in the Abyss (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2017)
One of the most challenging and controversial sequels of 2010. It resumed one of the most representative titles of the late twentieth century; it discarded much of what was presented in Porno, Irvine Welsh’s printed sequel, considering that it was not at the level of the original story; and it came twenty years later in an effort by the filmmaker to increase realism. This is to present a film that continues to address the issue of addictions, but with the peculiarity that they go into the background to focus squarely on the longing for the past and the feelings that life does not always go as one imagined. This exploration of disenchantment in adulthood earned her rave reviews, but it was insufficient to please a wide section of the public who compared it to the 96 film and accused her of her inability to provoke the same emotions. An undervalued title waiting for time to grant it the place it deserves.
Millions (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2004)
Danny Boyle has always shown a deep interest in human nature and the way society’s ambitions pervert the purity of the species. Although Millones is no exception, its differentiation lies in an approach governed by optimism, the product of a story that revolves around a child whose innate goodness leads him to share a large sum of money found shortly before a fictitious change in the British currency. An urban fairy tale that was praised by the public and critics, but that has struggled to transcend in a filmography of the highest quality and in a contemporary industry that usually gives greater recognition to tragedy. Although at times it seems more focused on maintaining the status of Boyle conceived after the Extermination than on risking in search of his own aspirations, it was key to the conception of I would like to be a millionaire (2008), since much of its essence is palpable in the film which gave the coveted Academy Award to the British filmmaker.
Steve Jobs (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2015)
Steve Jobs’s death in 2011 resulted in three cinematic approaches to his life and work. The most important of all was, without a doubt, the one directed by Danny Boyle. Based on the bestselling licensed biography by Walter Isaacson, the film recalls the entrepreneur’s legacy, drawing on the iconic 1998 iMac launch as a starting point. A great narrative exercise that makes the most of the flashback to fully explore one of the most fascinating lives of recent times and that, incidentally, was favored by what could well be considered the best ensemble of the entire career of the British, being the Oscar nominations for Michael Fassbender and Kate Winslet the best evidence of this. No less relevant is that it demonstrated the maturity of the filmmaker, who left behind some of the most representative elements of his filmography by putting the needs of the story first. The result is a high-quality, organic film that serves as a worthy tribute to one of the most celebrated minds of its time.
127 hours (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2010)
The adaptation of Between a Rock and a Hard Place, in which mountaineer Aron Ralston recalls an accident that forced him to amputate his arm with a knife, sounded like an impossible mission. Not because of the accident or the final decision, but because of the difficulty of transferring 127 hours of doubts and reflections to the screen. Danny Boyle accomplished the feat by capturing the mistakes made prior to the incident, as well as the marked decline of the central character that begins with physical pain and leads to all kinds of hallucinations due to lack of resources. However, its true lynchpin was the desire to carry on, resulting in a veritable hymn to life and one of the best survival movies of all time, further emphasized by a final tribute to the real Ralston. The mountaineer himself assures that, despite some minor changes, the authenticity of the film is such that it could well be considered a documentary. It garnered six Oscar nominations including Best Movie and Actor.
I would like to be a millionaire (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2008)
The unlikely victory in the television contest, the hopeful denouement and the Bollywooden dance in the end credits have caused many to consider I would like to be a millionaire as a simple contemporary fairy tale. This is only partially true. Although Danny Boyle takes advantage of the narrative bases of the story, the filmmaker combines them with the harshness of hyperrealism to portray the infamous conditions that many face in the Indian suburbs: extreme poverty, prostitution and criminality. Also emphasizing an authentic immersion in human filth and the tragic assertion that the only way to climb the social ladder is with the almost zero chance of winning a television contest. The result is a film that allows one to dream, more through the intervention of fortune than of human nature, which in turn results in an invitation to social reflection. An almost impossible mix, but it works perfectly under the gaze of the one who deserves to be considered one of the best filmmakers of his generation and who was deservedly awarded the Oscar for Best Film and Director.
Extermination (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2002)
If the zombie subgenre enjoyed such acceptance in the early 2000s it was largely by Danny Boyle, who took advantage of the eternal symbolic value of the undead, but without hesitating to alter some of its most representative elements, to give one of the biggest criticisms sociopolitical of the last times. A terrifying film for its fast and angry monsters, but also for its reflection of the growing scientific distrust embodied in an apocalypse that arose, not from divine punishment, but from the laboratory. Add to this the reflected uncertainty of a man who wakes up after a 28-day coma to realize that the world he knew is gone forever. A perfect reflection for the abrupt awakening that marked the 21st century with the attacks of 9/11. Finally, the fall of the established order, not with the desperate neighbors seen in so many films, but with a militia that has renounced obligations in search of survival, but also hedonism in a decadent existence. A decisive film for horror cinema, whose critical and box office success caused Danny Boyle to be compared ad nauseam to the legendary George A. Romero. Today he is remembered as the absolute consolidation of one of the best directors of his generation.
Life in the Abyss (Dir. Danny Boyle, 1996)
Danny Boyle made a good debut with Grave to the Ground, but it was his second film that placed him among the most promising filmmakers of his generation. Trainspotting, an adaptation of the homonymous novel by Irvine Welsh, follows four young people united by friendship, but also by the addictions that afflict them, paying special attention to one of its members who has decided to abandon the path of drugs. Far from imitating the formula addressed by so many films, this one found the differentiation in a peculiar mixture of drama, fantasy, hyper-realism and hints of humor, which gave a story marked by crudeness and tragedy, although not lacking in humanity. This unusual combination earned him immediate cult, being seen as a benchmark of his time, as well as the most representative film in all of Danny Boyle’s filmography. Although the filmmaker was not considered by the major competitions, the film did have an outstanding step through the awards season, highlighting his four BAFTA nominations – one of them for Best Film -, as well as his Oscar nomination in the category of Best Adapted Screenplay.
Danny Boyle directors
Luis Miguel Cruz Someday I will join the X-Men, the Rebel Alliance or the Night’s Watch. Proud member of Cine PREMIERE since 2008.