Paul King’s feature debut is a true oddity, part Withnail & I, part Mighty Boosh, this low budget Brit flick went by largely unnoticed in 2009.
It’s no surprise that the movie retains a Boosh feel; after all it’s written and directed by the man who helmed every episode of the cult BBC series. Bunny and the Bull is the story of Stephen Turnbull (Edward Hogg), a man who has become a shut in and hasn’t left his flat in over a year.
After Stephen had a failed attempt to declare his love for Melanie, he takes Bunny’s advice and puts a £50 bet on at the bookmakers. The tip pays off and using the winnings they decide to go on a road trip. Early on they encounter superstitious waitress Eloisa (Verónica Echegui), both men are attracted to her and this gets all the more difficult when she joins them on the road.
Present day Stephen often finds his mind wandering back to the events of a road trip he went on with his best (and only) friend Bunny (Simon Farnaby). Through bizarre flashbacks and hallucinations, the story unfolds and we learn what happened a year ago that lead Stephen to give up on the outside world.
I didn’t know what to expect from this movie, it’s sat in the pile for quite a while and I can’t honestly say I’d never considered watching it before today. It’s an acquired taste but it’s a great little film if you’re in the right mood.
Fans of The Boosh will adore the visual style of the movie, the animation is beautiful
and despite a micro budget the effects are as impressive as any giant fighting robot. There’s Cameos from The Boosh clansmen Noel Fielding as Javier the Matador, Richard Ayoade as the Museum Curator, and Julian Barratt as Atilla a dog-milk craving tramp.
Edward Hogg and Simon Farnaby have a natural chemistry together, they also appeared in the third series of Boosh as copycat outfit The Flighty Zeus. I’d like to see them cast in more films together, or failing that a TV series or failing that a movie review based podcast. Anything!
What I loved about The Mighty Boosh was it’s sense of wonder, its daft and silly nature filled with songs and quirky moments. Paul King has taken those sensibilities and translated them to another story, but would a Boosh movie be such a bad idea?
If you’re expecting a feature length episode of the sorely missed series, then you’re in for a let down. If however, you’re looking for a charming, well-made British road trip movie with a real emotional punch, and then this is the film for you.
I can’t wait to see what Paul King does next.