The comic value of Mr. Bean with the charm of Norman Tebbit.

Released in 2005, certified Not Yet Rated. Reviewed on 19 Aug 2006 by Scott Morris
Iceberg image

Saints preserve us from silent comedy. Time to face a different inconvenient truth than this Global Warming kick Al Gore's on - clowns aren't funny, and neither are people falling over.

"But Keaton and Chaplin..."

Ahem. Let me stop you there. Falling over and being marginally less insufferable than the rest of your ilk does not make you a genius, or anything less of an irrelevance in Space Year 2006. At best, it means you have impaired motor control.

Anyhow Iceberg sees burger outlet manager Fiona (Fiona Gordon), seemingly invisible to her spectacularly unobservant husband Julien (Dominique Abel), trap herself insider her own restaurant's walk in freezer. Silly girl. Sadly for the audience, this doesn't kill her outright, instead instilling a fierce desire to run away from her family and live on an iceberg. Now, I'm no doctor, so on, so forth.

So, off she runs to a remote fishing village where Fiona develops an infatuation for Rene (Philippe Martz), the sailor with a tragic past. While she tries to inveigle Rene into sailing north, Julien eventually realises his wife's absence and tries to follow her and save their marriage.

Iceberg image

What the above potted points leave out is the 'hilarious' slapstick and 'crazy' situations the leads find themselves in, all of which make for a thoroughly dispiriting experience. I suppose these people fall over and hit people as well as anyone else who does this for a living, but so do WWF wrestlers and no one's harping on about that being an art form. There's some merit in the claim for this film, as some of the statically framed shot setups qualify as clever. Not, one hastens to add, funny. The desperate clutching for quirkiness to add something of interest to proceedings smacks of interminable rewrites and additions than true inspiration. I've no clue whatsoever if that's true and no inclination whatsoever to check.

Now, please allow me to cut this short, as I've more interesting things to write about and I'm sure you've more interesting things to read than my heckling of a Belgian film. For me, this had no comedic merit whatsoever, a slight problem for any comedy. This, naturally, is completely subjective. If you're one of the millions who found Mr. Bean to be hilarious and find any joy in You've Been Framed (well, apart from Harry Hill's glib commentary) then I'm sure you'll lap this drivel up with a spoon. Some would call that a backhanded compliment, but I wouldn't want it to be said that I actually complimented this effective antidote to hilarity.

Were I in the business of passing quantifiable judgements, I'd award this 1/5 TippyMarks.

Dominique Abel
Fiona Gordon
Cast list:
Fiona Gordon (Fiona)
Dominique Abel (Julien)
Philippe Martz (Ren? le marin)