SFF 2011: The Trip: A Tasty Brit-Com Road Trip

14 Jun


By Lukey Folkard, Sydney Film Festival Correspondent

Michael Winterbottom (A Mighty Heart, Road to Guantanamo) directs The Trip, his latest Steve Coogan (I’m Alan Partridge), semi-biographical Brit-comedy collaboration (following on from 24 Hour Party People and Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story).

A feature-length reworking of the six-episode TV series of the same name, Steve Coogan is hired by The Observer to road-trip across the UK’s north, critiquing fine restaurants with his fine young foodie girlfriend Misha. She bails out, and Coogan is forced to ask his best friend and sometimes object of annoyance, Bob Brydon (Human Remains, Tristram Shandy) to accompany. The pair’s lack of  food critic credentials is plainly obvious –”That’s big popcorn” and “It reminds me of snot” being two examples.

The combination of Brydon and Coogan’s snarky impersonation rivalry and Coogan’s morose, mid-life career reflections, will leave fans of Alan Partridge, Three Men In A Boat, and other top-notch British comedies, well fed by this picturesque, ‘over-priced food’ tour.

Whether comedy, drama or documentary, Winterbottom never disappoints and this is a fun return after last year’s dark American crime thriller The Killer Inside Me. Though I would have preferred to see the original series.

8/10

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