When is the last time a movie made you laugh so hard your Diet Coke shot out of your nostrils? According to Time Magazine Film Critic Richard Corliss, the next time might be when you watch The Trip. After all, it happened to him.
E3 Spark Plugs loves a road trip film, and this one is driving up interest and great reviews at major Film Festivals including Toronto and Tribeca. Directed by Michael Winterbottom and starring acclaimed comedic actors Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon (24 Hour Party People, A Cock and Bull Story), The Trip follows the two actors playing themselves as “eat, drink and try not to kill each other” while touring the North of England in a Range Rover. Mind you, it isn’t the fast-paced, beer-fueled raunchfest you typically see in American road trip films (not to say we don’t love those, too). It’s a bit more the steady-paced, intellectual comedy that Brit filmmakers are known for.
Says Stephen Whitty of the Newark Star-Ledger: “Very funny…The kettle-on-the-fire of quietly simmering exasperation is a hallmark of English comedy and Coogan is one of its masters. It is, as one of these chefs might say, a quite delightful amuse-bouche.”
The storyline goes that Coogan is asked by The Observer to tour the country’s finest restaurants. He’s immediately stoked at the idea of a romantic getaway with his beautiful girlfriend. But when she opts out, Coogan’s only other option is best friend (and chief irritator) Brydon. Largely improvised, The Trip follows the duo as they drive each other to the sanity brink with constant one-upmanship and showdowns of competing impressions including dueling Sean Connerys, Al Pacinos, Michael Caines and Dustin Hoffmans. Somewhere along the way, the ultimate odd couple learns a thing or two about not just great food, but about relationships, the nature of fame and their own lives.
One fan calls The Trip “Monty Python meets Woody Allen.” Playboy calls it “Hysterical. Line for line, insult for insult, The Trip is the year’s most addictively quotable movie.” And the New Yorker: “The only thing that’s made me laugh at the movies this year. Coogan and Brydon are mimics of extreme virtuosity.”