Archive for June 22nd, 2012

by Allan Fish

(UK 2010 172m) DVD1/2

Gentlemen to bed

p  Andrew Eaton, Melissa Parmenter  d  Michael Winterbottom  w  Steve Coogan, Rob Brydon  ph  Ben Smithard  ed  Mags Arnold, Paul Monaghan

Steve Coogan (Steve), Rob Brydon (Rob), Claire Keelan (Emma), Margo Stilley (Mischa), Rebecca Johnson (Sally), Kerry Shale, Dolya Gavanski, Ben Stiller,

Michael Winterbottom’s A Cock and Bull Story detailed the making of a fictional adaptation of Sterne’s Tristram Shandy.  In it, the leads were played by Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon who also played the actors playing them, themselves.  At least, nearly themselves, for while their career details were carried over intact their private lives were fabrications, and the rest of the cast played semi-fictional variations of themselves in addition to their allotted parts in the novel.  It didn’t quite work, but it was full of brilliant moments and it’s obvious the experience planted an acorn in the minds of stars and director alike.

Five years on, the oak has grown to maturity, and Steve and Rob – again playing themselves but with fictional private lives – return as their alter egos.  Steve has been commissioned by the Observer magazine to write a series of reviews of top flight restaurants in the north – The Inn at Whitewell, L’Enclume at Cartmel, Holbeck Ghyll near Ambleside, Hipping Hall near Kirkby Lonsdale, The Yorke Arms nearPateleyBridgeand The Angel Inn in the Yorkshire Dales.  He had hoped to take his girlfriend Mischa – partly for the company and partly because she was a food connoisseur who could have helped him write the reviews – but she had returned to the States.  After several other turn-downs, he turns to Rob, who accepts and they set off for their week-long sojourn. (more…)

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