Review / ‘The Trip To Spain’ (M) ** and a half

AFTER trips around the UK and Italy accompanied by a crew led by noted filmmaker Michael Winterbottom, Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon are at it again, this time around Spain where “The Observer” newspaper has asked Steve to research a story about a remake of “Man of La Mancha”.

Steve has major personal and professional issues. He needs somebody he can trust to accompany him, to put up with his sometimes difficult behaviour and polish his ego. Once again, he chooses best mate Rob Brydon, who lives with wife and three anklebiters in a suburban London house waiting for the renovators to arrive.

Rob’s happy to accept the invitation. So off they go in the Range Rover to explore Spain, sample the cuisine, meet interesting people, sample restaurants, play games imitating the voices of stars of stage, TV and screen and reminiscing of their encounters with people more notable than they.

I expected better from Michael Winterbottom, whose filmography includes some memorable and challenging British films in a career beginning in 1988 when he was 27 – “Welcome to Sarajevo” and “Butterfly Kiss” come quickly to mind. He’s used Steve Coogan in several of them.

The table talk sounds like a mixture of scripted and improvised. The quality of the imitation is not bad and may tempt some to play who-is-it guessing games – but please, not aloud while the film is screening!

But it becomes tedious when it dominates what is little more than a languid ego tripping travelogue of which many may consider the most enjoyable part to be Louis Armstrong singing “A Foggy Day In London Town” as the opening credits roll.

At Capitol 6, Palace Electric and Dendy

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Leave your opinion here. Please be nice. Your Email address will be kept private.
%d bloggers like this: