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A Cock And Bull Story

After giving you a mini-review of a film that's a musical about the making of a musical (The Producers), we go on to a film that's all about the making of a film, or more, the personalities involved. This film certainly does make you think about people egos.

The whole premise of A Cock And Bull Story is that it's all about the making of a film that's supposedly unmakable. The production team are attempting to make a film based on the book The Life And Opinions Of Tristram Shandy, Gentlemen, an apparently impossible task, due to the many tangents in the storyline and continual use of eccentricities in the English language (along with blank pages and random punctuation) to convey itself. What results is a film that can't make it's mind up. This production team are having a cash crisis and appear seemingly unsure of where to go. Is it a war film? Is it a romance? Or is it just a mad bloke rambling about having his penis caught in a window?

The cast is a good one. The two leads are Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon, peppered with short appearances by many other British stars - Stephen Fry and Dylan Moran to name but two. The relationship between Coogan and Brydon is almost entirely antagonistic, with each one continually trying to score points against the other in a similar manner to Ricky Gervais in Extras.

The two bounce off each other very well and you can never quite work out whether the whole thing was ad-lib or scripted. Whilst Coogan seems to have it all (the car, beautiful partner and baby), he comes over as a sad, nearly Alan Partridge-esque (again) character who seems more concerned with his own vanity, whilst Brydon is the smart and funny one, continually poking at Coogan with one-liners. There's plenty to chuckle (or wince) at.

Without giving the film away, it's amusing, but it does seem to try and escape the whole film-making thing in the last ten minutes, possibly because should such a task would indeed be nigh-on impossible, so you feel it's a cop-out. Nonetheless, it's the first film in a long time that's made me sit and watch the credits until they've fully disappeared off the screen.

It's all harmless fun and I'd recommend you see it if you feel like a chuckle. Whilst not the best film you'll ever see, the BBC haven't done too badly. It's worth a look.
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