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Archive for June 8th, 2012

by Allan Fish

(UK 1997/2001 167m) DVD2

Joss Ackland’s Spunky Backpack

p  Christopher Morris, Caroline Leddy  d  Michael Cumming  w  Christopher Morris, Arthur Mathews, Graham Linehan, Peter Baynham

Christopher Morris, Mark Heap, Kevin Eldon, Doon Mackichan, Gina McKee, Amelia Bullmore, Claire Skinner, Bill Bailey, Simon Pegg, Willie Ross, Tamsin Greig,

In the three years after The Day Today finished its criminally short run, we had seen many of its luminaries gone on to further success.  Chris Morris was a different creature, one who craved privacy, never did interviews and had faded into the background.  He may have been out of the spotlight, but the camera was still on him, even if it was switched off.  When he returned in 1997, and now at Channel 4, he came with a cult item that would completely redefine the line between reality and the fake.

Brass Eye stars Morris as the presenter of a seemingly deliberately amateurish social affairs programme, a sort of World in Action on ecstasy.  It lasted only six episodes of around 23 minutes each, and each was devoted to a different topic; animals, drugs, sex, science, crime and decline, with a one-off special four years later.  Each managed to both satirise and sensationalise the threats highlighted in a hysterical media.  In ‘Animals’, for example, a cow is shown being exploded out of a giant cannon-like device and a debate runs about whether we are too kind or cruel to animals.  (more…)

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