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Bigga than Ben: The Russians’ Guide to Ripping Off London

There seems to have been a bit of a glut of films about Russians in London recently.

Partly, I suppose because of the simple fact that Russians are in London in huge numbers, partly because us Brits are a little bit scared of Russia, and partly because Russians are oddly fascinated by Britain (even though they pretend to hate us).

Bigga than Ben, the latest of the Russian London films takes a slightly different approach to its predecessors. Instead of focusing on the glamour of London, or the glamour of Russians in London, it focuses on the, well, the ordinary(ish) Russians just trying to illegally graft a living in London.

Based on Pavel Tetersky and Sergei Sakin’s award-winning diaries of their life in London, Bigga Than Ben was apparently a bit of a hit in Russia – it took $500,000 at the Russian Box Office. Starring Ben Barnes (Prince of Caspian), it’s – unsurprisingly – a dark comedy. It’d have to be really. But the producers for some reason, think it’s a “breezy, barbed satire”.

Bigga than Ben has had a pretty low key release in London. You can only see it at the Apollo West End, Genesis and Tricycle. Still, if you’re in London over the next couple of weeks, might be worth catching.


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