Published Mar 01, 2005A G-rated feel-good comedy by Danny Boyle, starring two innocent children, with no sex, violence or profanity? Really? Yes, the bewildered message board reports by fans of Trainspotting and 28 Days Later are correct. Boyle exposes his soft, gooey centre in Millions, an uplifting fantasy caper that brilliantly substitutes heroin addicts and plagues with huge amounts of heart without sacrificing any of his askew and original visual style.
England is on the verge of switching to the Euro and the British Pound is about to become obsolete. Anticipating the large sums of money coming through the train stations in order to be changed, a massive heist is executed. Soon after, nine-year-old capitalist Anthony (Lewis McGibbon) and seven-year-old philanthropist Damian (Alexander Etel, who's adorable) come across a gym bag, which literally lands in their lap, filled with £229,320 (which Anthony would be quick to tell you is exactly $533,175 CDN).
Deciding not to tell their widower father (James Nesbitt) about their newly acquired loot, they realise they need to spend all this cash in a big hurry. Anthony wants to buy property, or failing that, a lot of toys. But Damian, still coping with their mother's death, thinks God has sent the money for him to give to the poor. His imaginary friends visions of various saints throughout history who give him advice (including Claire of Assisi, the cigarette-smoking patron saint of television) assure him he's on his way to being blessed. But first he has to make sure the scary robber that's threatening him can't get the booty.
Frank Cottrell Boyce's (24 Hour Party People) witty script resorts to sentimentality only in appropriately small doses. Millions is still as quirky and irreverent as Boyle's previous films, and because it's filmed through the eyes of children, it has an exuberance that's infectious. (Fox Searchlight)