Mindhorn is a delightfully quirky British comedy, featuring a brilliant performance by Julian Barratt and some biting satire of ’80s television. The film tells the story of Richard Thorncroft (Julian Barratt), a washed up actor best known for his role as Detective Mindcroft. When Mindcroft’s biggest fan (Russell Tovey) is accused of murder, Thorncroft is brought into reprise his iconic role, this time for real.
While there are some familiar beats, most notably when it comes to the crime elements of the film, it’s Barratt’s self obsessed, self loathing lead performance that makes the film so charming. The character’s despicable, yet charismatic nature is completely endearing, and the film’s references to pop culture and classic television are tactful and witty. It’s a broad, often hilarious film with some surprising heart, and it’s one of the best comedies of the year. Grade: B