“In a Culture Show special, Oscar winning director Danny Boyle talks to Mark Kermode about his new film Trance, London 2012’s afterglow and the highs and lows of an extraordinary film-making career.”
Danny Boyle began his career in subversive agit-prop theatre at the Royal Court and went on to be equally subversive in TV.
Breaking into feature films, his back catalogue includes the violent, kinetic, anarchic as well as touching, satirical, philosophical and romantic. From iconic counter-culture Trainspotting, frenetic horror 28 Days Later, to eight-Oscar triumph, the brutal romance Slumdog Millionaire, Boyle is at his best when he refuses to compromise. It was something he acknowledged in less successful projects – Hollywood excesses A Life Less Ordinary and The Beach.
Unashamedly Northern, working class and left-wing, the unlikely creative director of the London Olympics poured all of his theatricality into a political crowd-pleasing show.
Post-Olympic triumph, Boyle turned away from the world-wide fame to return to subversive shorts and thriller Trance.
Guided by self-confessed fan Kermode (without notes), Boyle spoke candidly about all his work, with inserts from long-time collaborators all the way back to first feature Shallow Grave: writer John Hodge, producer Andrew MacDonald and actress Kerry Fox.
There were reminders of some great work, including TV’s Mr Wroe’s Virgins and the under-appreciated Millions.
Kermode, Boyle and The Culture Show at their best. RC