A miserable conman and his partner pose as Santa and his Little Helper to rob department stores on Christmas Eve. But they run into problems when the conman befriends a troubled kid, and the security boss discovers the plot.
Billy Bob Thornton,
The UK is about to switch its currency from Pounds to Euros, giving a gang a chance to rob the poorly-secured train loaded with money on its way to incineration. But, during the robbery, one of the big bags falls literally from the sky on Damian's playhouse, a 7-year old given to talking to saints. The boy then starts seeing what the world and the people around him are made of. Ethics, being human and the soul all come to the forefront in this film. Written by
Instead of making cast and crew T-shirts, production donated the money to Water Aid, to build a well in Africa (like the family did in the film). See more »
Though the film is set around the Christmas holiday, several shots show verdant foliage only likely to be seen in summer. Director Danny Boyle explains the season difference at 30:44 in the DVD commentary and says he was told it looks more like Umbria (the Green Heart of Italy) than Manchester. See more »
The French have said au revoir to the franc, the Germans have said auf wiedersehen to the mark, and the Portuguese have said... whatever to their thing.
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When the Pathe logo comes up, the shadow of the hen has a halo over its head. See more »
I'm not sure that any movie has left me in a bigger emotional mess at the end, ever. It is very hard to find a film where its driving force is good-natured, pure, simple innocence. Everything is cynical, dry or overly-clever.
Millions manages to encapsulate the simple joys and pains of childhood and put it up on screen in remarkable fashion. Sure it's a little gooey, but it's a good kind of gooey. Here is a film with something of a spiritual backbone, but not in a way that is preachy or overly top-down.
A gem of an idea is backed up with amazing style. Director of Photography Anthony Dod Mantle pulls all sorts of tricks out of his hat, each appropriate and enriching to the film as a whole. Alex Etel's performance is superlative; the camera goes right in his eyes and you can see palpable emotion from the child actor there.
The storytelling device of introducing the Saints, Damian's "imaginary friends", is handled deftly and sweetly, not in a silly, obvious manner. The actors who portray the saints, including Enzo Cilenti and Alun Armstrong, have a down-to-earth, human manner about them that puts the audience at ease and allows us to enjoy their presence just as the character of Damian does.
The film harks back to old-fashioned children's' films, with its slimy villain, morally off-center older brother, honest hardworking dad and larger-than-life backdrop. When the waterworks start to flow, the audience won't feel cheated, because the film worked hard at creating (not engineering) that emotion, and deserves it.
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