Writer and Director: Paul King
Cast: Edward Hogg, Simon Farnaby, Veronica Echegui, Julian Barratt, Noel Fielding, Richard Ayoade
Due to circumstances that eventually become clear, Stephen (Edward Hogg) hasn’t left his apartment in almost a year. The very thought of venturing outside can bring on an anxiety attack. But even within the safe confines of his flat, Stephen can’t escape the past, preserved and labeled in boxes lining the walls, a meticulously maintained catalog of his self-inflicted exile, right down to his used straws and toenail clippings. The consequences of opening one of those time capsules can be dire—Stephen often finds himself visited by his dead pal Bunny (Simon Farnaby) and other remnants of his former life.
Writer-Director Paul King is one of the clever buggers who helped create “The Mighty Boosh” and there are little homages and reminders of that brilliant series scattered throughout “Bunny and the Bull” (most obviously in the casting choices). Stephen’s world is populated by flesh and blood people but often features painted or paper backdrops, miniature models and stop-motion animation. Very Boosh-like…but the artificial settings also emphasize the protagonist’s tenuous hold on reality and remind us that much of what we are seeing has been coloured and shaped by memory (and trauma).
The cast is more than up to the material—young Veronica Echegui is a treat, earthy and funny, her profanity-laced interplay with Hogg and Farnaby one of the highlights of the film.
Original, whimsical, heartfelt, “Bunny and the Bull” is for people who loved “Boosh”, “Withnail & I” and some of those odd little Brit comedies Handmade released in the early-1980s: “Private Function” and “The Missionary”. Disarming and funny, smartly produced and entirely too unique and different to appeal to all tastes.
Personally, I loved “Bunny and the Bull” and I wouldn’t hesitate recommending it to a friend. But I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t like it. Especially once they got to the dog-milking scene…
ΩΩΩ 1/2 (out of 5)