So, in a time when you can’t travel or go out to eat in a restaurant, what better time than watch two of the funniest men on the planet, Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan, do that. This fourth (and last) installment of The Trip series, has the pair going to Greece. It’s Anthony Bourdain meets Anthony Hopkins (since they do a few Hopkins impersonations). Brydon does quote Aristotle (calling him “Ari Stotle” which kept cracking my wife up), on the virtues of imitation.
As with the previous films, they play like travelogues, with the guys going from restaurant to tourist site, and always trying to one-up each other. It was fun to hear Coogan go on about the good reviews he got for his role in Stan & Ollie. The funniest was his reading a review that talked about how he was such a talented actor, when he’s a jerk in real life. He said, “Now, what I take away from that is…the talented actor bit.” Brydon smirks as he replies, “That’s what you took away from that comment?”
What makes these movies so much fun for me is that I like these guys so much, even if they’re not being funny, but merely talking eloquently about the history behind these landmarks, I’m enjoying myself.
And while some elements of this repeat things we’ve seen in previous outings, they get a bit more serious, as they discuss their own mortality. When the topics get heavier, I’m guessing those are the only moments that were actually scripted and not ad-libbed.
There’s a great bit about Brydon telling Coogan how he looks older, and is starting to look like Richard Gere. And each time Brydon breaks out in song, it’s hysterical. He sings “Grease,” which upsets Coogan to no end, as it has nothing to do with Greece. On a boat, he sings “Sailing” and laments about some young people he met that didn’t even know who Rod Stewart was. There’s also “Tragedy” by the Bee Gees, and some wonderful Gregorian chants when they take kayaks into some caves.
It was surprisingly how a few of the bits were things I’ve joked about with my friends and family. Talk about the Ottoman Empire being a discount furniture store. Another involved various Dustin Hoffman impressions; not just from Rain Man and Tootsie, but the deep cuts — Marathon Man and Midnight Cowboy. The Ratzo Rizzo that Brydon did had me in tears.
And if you ever wondered what Mick Jagger might sound like if he were put in an old folks home, being visited by Keith, well…they’ll give ya that.
3 stars out of 5, and you can catch it VOD.