Director: Aubrey Powell
The Monty Python reunion – here it is on DVD. Wobbles and all. John Cleese sleepwalks a bit, fluffs a few of his lines, Eric Idle looks more like some moisty-palmed, mouth-breathing fan that’s snuck in, dressed as Eric Idle; taking it all far too seriously. Look, you could pick holes in this – so easily.
But there’s also some magic – not so much comedic magic, not so much artistry, more the magic of nostalgia, and a circus-like presentation; the limited engagement, a one-off reunion captured for fans. You look at this as you would an old photo album. You know the pay-offs and punchlines just as well as they do (better, in the case of Cleese) but if you grew up with this, if it had any impact on your life in any way, seeing the reunion isn’t (just) the awkward old uncle/grandfather dancing at the 21st. Or if it is, you encourage it anyway, take some solace in it, remember the good times, enjoy the fact that comedy legends appear to be doing this for the fans – to give the nerds one final fling.
Not many things deserve a free pass. But this does. It isn’t wondrous but you might take some joy in seeing it.
I have TWO copies to giveaway to lucky Off The Tracks readers. So for a chance to win tell me your favourite Monty Python sketch in the comments below. I’ll pick two winners, they’ll each receive a copy of Monty Python LIVE (mostly) – One Down Five To Go, the reunion show filmed at London’s O2 Arena.