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Bigga Than Ben [DVD] [2007]

4.0 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Ben Barnes, Andrei Chadov
  • Directors: Suzie Halewood
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: High Fliers
  • DVD Release Date: 22 Jun. 2009
  • Run Time: 82 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0020NNEYY
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 117,685 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description

Product Description

Based on the best selling diaries by two self confessed "pieces of Moscow scum" who produced their own rough guide to London. This dark comedy is the tale of two likeable but wayward young Russian immigrants who come to London do amass an easy fortune. But it s not too long before Spiker (Ben Barnes) and Cobakka (Andrei Chadov) realise that legally they are not going to get very far. So aided by the dodgy Artash they learn to shoplift, rip off banks, joyride ride on the tube and turn mobile phones in to crack. Finding themselves drawn into the shadowy underworld life begins to turn sour and the highs begin to fade. When Spiker begins to fall prey to the easy drugs Cobakka is forced to making some life-changing decisions. Special Features: Making of Bigga Than Ben

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
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Just in case anyone's in any doubt - this is not a film to learn English by. Or how to be PC. If you want to laugh on the other hand...
Two Russians come to London intent on ripping the place off - first legitimately, then by any and all means necessary. Like all travelers who come to the lovely UK, they're unprepared for the weather, the sheer expense and especially as regards London - the mass disinterest in their plight. God knows how but our two Russian heroes, in spite of being racist opportunists, soon learn that the only people who can help them are those who live outside the system like themselves. Unlike most London based films, there are no Oxo tower shots or posh people in wheelchairs. The normally clean-cut Ben Barnes and his sidekick Chadov are a great pair who slowly win you over to the point where you feel sorry for them. Nothing goes as planned, but still they persevere even when all the odds are stacked up against them. Fast-paced, very funny, this is a beautifully shot look at the very ugly underbelly of London that most of the tourists (or city-dwellers) never see.
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This is a fantastic debut from the very talented writer/director Suzie Halewood. The film charts the spiritual journey undertaken by two Russian immigrants, Spiker (Andrei Chadov) and Cobakka (Ben Barnes), who come to London to dodge the draft and fill their pockets. Barnes, in what is undoubtedly his best role to date, gives an outstanding performance and the pairing with talented Russian actor, Andrei Chadov makes for one of the best double acts since `Withnail and I'. The film shows a side of London rarely seen and combines poignant drama with some hilarious comedy. Definitely a must-see DVD!
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Sobakka and Spiker, two young Muscovite bad lads come to "Foggy Albion" to seek their fortune on gold-paved streets of London. Their tactics? Play the benefit system, defraud the banks and nick stuff from Tesco's. Unfortunately it's a little harder than they expected...

A sideways look at the British underclass in all its bigoted glory, Bigga Than Ben is very obviously an attempt to do Trainspotting for the 21st Century: black(ish) humour, freeze-frame cinematography, mildly humorous subtitles and quirky "played-for-the-camera" acting. The two protagonists, played by Ben Barnes and Andrey Chadov certainly have the cheeky charm of Rentboy Renton and Spud Murphy and they do their job well. Unfortunately the film doesn't quite live up to its promises and the comedy falls a little flat. The plot lacks a clear direction, the moral of the story is neither particularly strong or clear and, by the time you get to the end, there is little closure to the affair.

I found the characters to be stereotyped: the English obsession with illegal immigrants and asylum seekers is a strong theme - we're not ALL Daily Mail readers, honestly! However, the nice little twist here was that most of the xenophobic Brits in the film were themselves "ethnics", be they black, Asian, Irish or from oop North (sorry - I jest).

Beware, there is drug use, shoplifting and bad language aplenty. The dialogue is also a little hard to follow (probably intentionally so) and I ended up watching this with the subtitles going.

Mildly diverting, Bigga Than Ben is worth a watch, but probably doesn't demand a special trip to the video rental shop.
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I bought this on the off chance that I would like it. I love it. I laughed and laughed, loved the humour, and whole bad attidude the Russians had.
The film is also dark and very much shows the bad, and ugly side of London or any large city, the lack of care, drugs, grotty rooms to sleep in - I loved the garden shed best!
Ben Barnes is a very good actor - believeable in each role he plays, and not one to be type cast, which is great. if only we could have more films like this - cheap to make / low budget (optional) and good actors (which we have). We don't need Hollywood when we have films like this on our doorsteps.
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I'm a huge Ben Barnes fan, he's handsome, a great actor and charming! When i saw the trailer for this, it didn't do it justice, the film is incredibly funny yet extremely relatable. Being a london-lass myself, i always see people like the two main characters and i often wonder how they came to be here and this some how gives you an insight to what you don't know about emigrants and what they go through when arriving to England! This movie could be describes as funny version of Dirty pretty things, with the same sort of themes being touched! I would highly recommend this film!
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The Bigga Then Ben DVD is not enhanced for widescreen TVs, though it is advertised at 16x9 widescreen.

For a disc that is made in 2011 it is pathetic that a DVD company is 1) releasing non-anamorphic titles, and 2) promoting false details on the packaging.

Disappointed that no one has been able to provide this level of detail on this DVD in previous posts.
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What a great film. This film is a triumph of British Independent film making.The plot is superb (adapted from a book & true story, and the acting is fantastic. It kept me interested from start to finish, and I loved every minute of it. I thoroughly recommend it to anyone who's a fan of proper film.
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