Movie Review: Millions

Your mother has just died, your father has moved you into a new home in a strange suburb, your classmates are hostile, your brother and father think your to-the-last-detail knowledge of the saints is just a tad embarrassing.

So you go for a walk along the train tracks and build a playhouse from discarded cardboard boxes. There you can talk in peace with the saints who visit and inquire about your mother, the recently sainted Maureen.

You're a good and faithful little boy, and you're doing the best you can to make sense of an irrational, unpredictable world that is so indifferent it is cruel. Next thing you know, a bag full of money lands in your way--the ill-gotten gain of a robbery.

You share the secret with your brother, who uses some of it to bribe classmates into kindness and attempts to use yet more to invest in real estate. You, being seven-year-old Damian, prefer to give the money away. You feed homeless men at Pizza Hut. You give it to the Mormons. You hand some over to a guy who just plain looks like he could use some. You toss in another pile to a charity that digs wells in Africa.

Eventually, though, reality pays a call: the school wants to know why you have so much to give to the African charity, your dad finds out, the crook wants the cash back and tears your house apart looking for it, England is changing from the pound to the Euro and the money will soon be worthless if you don't do something.... And it all works out.

The saints in heaven, including Peter himself, come to your rescue and leave you with enough to build a new life stashed in banks all over town and enough to dig wells in Africa. There is a happily-ever-after because this is your story, you're telling it, and you will have goodness at all costs and without any expectations. You are an innocent and wonderful child bringing a little goodness to the world even as the world tosses you about and leaves you alone and suffering from time to time. You're no worse for the wear because you've learned a lot about human nature and how far a little goodness can go.

Millions is a smart, poignant movie directed by Danny Boyle. The filming is as bright and dreamy as the mind of a lovely child.


  1. Anonymous12:34 PM

    This is a very nice post, and I have put the movie on my list to see.

    Millions has been compared to Andrew Lloyd Webber's Whistle Down the Wind. I took my family (six tickets@$60...) to see the American musical in Washington DC before Webber pulled it back to England, where it is doing well.

  2. Greg,
    Thanks for stopping by. I'll have to track down the Webber piece. Millions will appeal to your sense of humor, I think.


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