The Metro

After debuting with the stylishly nerve-jangling Shallow Grave, Danny Boyle reshaped our cultural landscape with Trainspotting, right from the moment Ewan McGregor hared down an Edinburgh street proclaiming ‘choose life’. In this book’s extensive film-by-film interviews, we discover how true the incendiary energy of that iconic scene is to the director.


The joy – and danger – of these extended conversations with film-makers is that they will skew your critical faculties. So it is with Amy Raphael’s book Danny Boyle (Faber, £14.99). Until sifting through its pages, my opinion of the director’s work was, like many film fans, given to snobbishness: that he squandered the ferocious promise of Shallow Grave (1994) and Trainspotting (1996), sinking to such insipid depths as A Life Less Ordinary (1997) and The Beach (2000), before — even worse — winning Oscars galore for the mawkish Slumdog Millionaire (2008). Now I take a kinder view.

Evening Standard

For a genuine insight into a screen talent, turn to Amy Raphael's Danny Boyle: In His Own Words (Faber, £14.99). As with her previous, similar collaboration with Mike Leigh, Raphael proves a shrewd interrogator who writes intelligently but accessibly about the art, craft and commerce of film. Boyle, the director of Trainspotting and Slumdog Millionaire, opens up about his Catholic upbringing and influences. He is infectiously enthusiastic, frank about his failures, and very good on the grind and compromise involved in making a movie.

The Scotsman

It's a safe bet that any new Quentin Tarantino film will involve a measure of creative swearing and grievous bodily harm; equally, that a Mike Leigh title is going to concern ordinary English folk having whiny squabbles over cups of tea. A new Danny Boyle film is a less predictable entity.