Review: Mindhorn is a treat for fans of farcical British comedy

PUBLISHED: 09:00 15 June 2017

Mindhorn starring Julian Barratt

Mindhorn starring Julian Barratt


Co-written by stars Julian Barratt and Simon Farnaby, Mindhorn tells the tale of Richard Thorncroft (Barratt), a washed up actor best known for his role as Detective Mindhorn in a popular 1980s TV show.

When an deranged killer demands to talk to Mindhorn, Thorncroft must return to his most famous role to assist police and in the process attempt to recapture his popularity.

Set on the Isle of Man, Mindhorn is an absolute treat for fans of farcical British comedy.

An opening montage of the original 80s show informs us that Mindhorn has a bionic eye the can literally “see the truth” and from then onwards the laughs come thick and fast.

Julian Barrett plays up Thorncroft’s pompous attitude and sense of entitlement to perfection, but it’s also hard not to feel for him as it becomes clear how far his star has fallen.

There are shades of Alan Partridge in the set up, and fans of that show will be pleased to see Steve Coogan himself appear as Thorncroft’s now more successful co-star.

It’s an impressive cast that also features Russell Tovey as escaped killer The Kestral, and Angela Riseborough as local detective Baines.

A particular highlight is co-writer Farnaby’s hilarious turn as former stuntman Clive Parnevik, who is now living with Thorncoft’s ex-girlfriend and takes great pleasure in taunting his former colleague with some harsh but extremely funny put downs.

The Isle of Man is a good setting for this brand of ludicrous comedy and coupled with some ridiculous physical humour, there is so much to like about this film. At 89 minutes long, it also never outstays its welcome.

Due to its somewhat limited release, it’s unclear how much of a hit Mindhorn will be in cinemas, but the film has all the hallmarks of a cult classic in the making.

For my money, Mindhorn is the funniest film of the year.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Dunmow Broadcast visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Dunmow Broadcast staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Dunmow Broadcast account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

Yesterday, 11:04

A learner driver whose car hit a five-year-old boy before hitting a wall in Gabriel Street, Saffron Walden, has pleaded guilty to causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

Yesterday, 10:07

A campaigner has spoken about his “dream” for buildings near Dunmow which housed prisoners of war during the Second World War to be turned into a museum, rather than possibly demolished to make way for new homes.

Yesterday, 08:54

Suspects entered a church on the B1051 at Broxted on March 30 and removed two coffin stands, a wooden ladder, a wooden table and a brass bible stand.

Yesterday, 10:58

Essex Fire said a resident from Hall Close in Henham had a lucky escape this morning after a fire went undetected in his house until he went upstairs to bed and found the room full of smoke.

Digital Edition

Read the Dunmow Broadcast e-edition E-edition

Most read stories

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter