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The Essential Guide to Bristol
02 December 2009
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Bunny and the Bull (15)

The ViewBristol Review

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Review byMatthew Turner25/11/2009

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 101 mins

Hugely entertaining, visually inventive and extremely funny comedy with a superb script and terrific performances from Hogg and Farnaby.

What's it all about?
Directed by Paul King (The Mighty Boosh), Bunny and the Bull stars Edward Hogg as Stephen, a nervous, reclusive shut-in who hasn't left his flat in a year and has obsessively filed away all his possessions in a series of labelled boxes. When something disrupts his daily routine, he begins to reminisce about the road trip he took around Europe with his larger-than-life best friend Bunny (Simon Farnaby), making the audience wonder what could have happened on the trip to cause Stephen to shut himself away for a year.

It quickly becomes clear that Bunny and Stephen are an extremely mismatched pair of friends; Stephen wants to do a cultural tour of Europe's museums (including The German Museum of Cutlery) but all Bunny wants to do is indulge in sex and gambling. Then they meet Spanish waitress Eloisa (Veronica Echegui, who bears a striking resemblance to Penelope Cruz) in Poland and agree to drive her to Spain, where Bunny declares that he wants to fight a bull.

The Good
Edward Hogg and Simon Farnaby make a terrific comic duo; Bunny is almost obscenely laid back and his constant attempts to loosen up uptight Stephen (ostensibly he's taking him on the trip to get over a recent heartbreak) are extremely funny. Obviously, you can imagine the same roles being played by Boosh stars Noel Fielding and Julian Barratt, both of whom appear here in amusing cameos (Barratt as a dog-loving tramp, Fielding as Eloisa's boozy ex-matador brother).

The film is gorgeously shot, with beautifully inventive production design work – every scene has box-shaped patterns and homemade, animated effects that both highlight the dream-like nature of Stephen's flashbacks and also recall the mountains of boxes in his flat (you suspect the director watched a lot of Bagpuss growing up). King also packs every frame with tiny details, ensuring that the film will reward several repeat viewings.

The Great
The script is extremely funny, with several wonderful running gags (particularly Stephen's cocktail-making skills) and terrific dialogue that's packed with quotable lines.

Worth seeing?
Bunny and the Bull is a beautifully directed, superbly acted and frequently hilarious comedy about friendship, love and heartache. Highly recommended and don't be put off if you're not a fan of The Mighty Boosh.

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Bunny and the Bull (15)
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