Mr. Bean's Holiday/Death At A Funeral
Movie Reviews
by Carl Macki


Mr. Bean's Holiday (2007)
Directed by Steve Bendelack
In General Release
Rated G
Starring Rowan Atkinson as Mr. Bean

Death at a Funeral (2007)
Directed by Frank Oz         
Written by Dean Craig     


The ever so British Mr. Bean at a church raffle is a lucky winner to the south of France. After going through the Chunnel, in Paris he manages to stumble his way onto a a bullet train to Cannes.  In a series of haphazard events on the railliner, he separates a prominent Russian film director on his way to the Film Festival from his son. The plot surrounds the further, funny misadventures Mr. Bean eventuates in attempting to reunite the father with his son son, which escalates to a possible criminal child abduction.  A sub plot involves an egotistical American film director played by WIllem Dafoe, and an actress in the film he is showcasing, and Mr. Bean's involvement with the actress, Sabine (Emma de Caunes), and the boy (Max Baldry), while all of Frances is on a manhunt for the three  The movie reminds me of the early Pee Week Herman films, "My Father The Hero, with a little bit of My Little Sunshine" thrown in. "Holiday" may appeal to the child in you. It's over the top in sentimentally but it's all in harmless fun.

Today a grocer checker told me that the same writer of "Four Weddings And A Funeral, wrote the smash hit international comedy "A Death At A Funeral." That is not true. The writer of "A Funeral" is Dean Craig, who wrote "Caffeine and "Dirty Little Secrets." The writer of "Four Weddings," Rich Curtis, actually wrote several of the Mr. Bean comedies. Whoever the screenwriter, "A Death At A Funeral" made me laugh louder than any movie I have seen in recent memory. The humor is gross, morbid, and sickly, but this is not a mean deformity. It does put the "F U" in "funeral," but leaves you in good humor.

I liked all of the actors in this movie. Director Frank Oz is dead on by making light of death.

Matthew MacFayden is steely and chagrined as dependable son Daniel, who is struggling to come up with the down on a new flat he promised to his wife Jane (Keely Hawes), while also dealing with the costs of the funeral, that his expatriate, New York-living, successful novelist brother Robert (Rupert Graves) shirks on sharing.

Graves is smarmy and suave; in this case setting, a jolly and pathetic combination. Alan Tudyk left a memorable impression as the fiance of cousin Martha (Daisy Donovan), going totally bonkers during the service due to an accidental dosing with a powerful psychedic.

Peter Linkage, as the queer midget lover of the dead father, is a mink amid squirrels. The kicker is the proposition he lays before sons Danie and Robert. Last, Peter Vaughan is phenomenal as a vituperous, wheelchair-bound uncle. His excretory duress on a toilet, is simply THE SHIT!

Highly recommended.


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