THE TRIP

Michael Winterbottom’s comedy is a riotous and often hilarious but also vaguely thought-provoking road trip mockumentary and it was the funniest film I saw all year. Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon (of Winterbottom’s Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story) play somewhat (?) exaggerated versions of themselves – two pompous and egomaniacal British actors who must travel the countryside sampling meals at various diners, restaurants and hotels only to have the occasion dissolve into bickering and dueling celebrity impressions (Michael Caine and Al Pacino are particularly astonishing), interspersed with moments of would-be insight resulting from bouts of self-loathing (at least on Coogan’s part; Brydon seems rather down-to-earth). Set to a melancholy score by Michael Nyman (who borrows from his own score for Winterbottom’s Wonderland), this is one of the most wickedly funny and (by the end) surprisingly touching films (in a sense) about acting I’ve seen.

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