New ALAN PARTRIDGE Now On DemandMarch 02, 2014

New ALAN PARTRIDGE Now On Demand

ALAN PARTRIDGE (Magnolia)

On Demand Weekly provides new movie reviews of hot movies on demand from the POV of watching from the comfort of your home. Today's review: ALAN PARTRIDGE.

2013 was quite the year for Steve Coogan. He reunited with Rob Brydon and director Michael Winterbottom in Italy for a sequel to their hilarious film THE TRIP. He also voiced a character in the monster hit DESPICABLE ME 2 and spoke out as a victim of the News Corp. phone hacking scandal. But where Coogan really hit it was as star, producer and co-writer of PHILOMENA, one of those little films that could that garnered two Oscar nods for Coogan and one for the amazing Dame Judi Dench in the title role. As a cherry on top of all this goodness, Coogan returned to playing the part that made him famous, in the eponymous ALAN PARTRIDGE.

 


In the film, Alan and his radio cohorts find themselves the victims of media consolidation and corporate downsizing when a conglomerate swallows up their radio station and starts to cut employees. Nerves and paranoia run rampant, and, as the staff gathers for a party, DJ Pat (Colm Meaney, HELL ON WHEELS) cracks and takes Alan and his co-workers hostage. What follows is a series of negotiations with the reluctant but self-absorbed Alan as intermediary between Pat and the police. 

 

Despite the title character’s narcissism, ALAN PARTRIDGE is a pleasure due to Coogan’s willingness to make Alan a fully realized character. Unlike David Brent, for whom Ricky Gervais seemed to display a measure of contempt and ridicule, Partridge comes off as more of a lovable buffoon. Because Coogan embraces the character and eschews an ironic distance, Alan is easy to get behind, particularly as his fortunes change and he shifts from hostage to fugitive.

Though it runs out of steam in its final third, ALAN PARTRIDGE has an anarchic spirit and enough laughs to make it a pleasing time passer. The supporting cast, particularly Meaney, give it their all and the film is a great reminder of just how versatile Coogan really is. 

 

DEMAND IT

 

- Chris Claro

 

Chris

Chris Claro is a contributing writer for On Demand Weekly. He is a former Director of Promotion for Sundance Channel and now works as Lead Copywriter at Cablevision. He has written for dvdverdict.com and the Eyes and Ears section of huffingtonpost.com. He blogs at http://disconcertingglare.blogspot.com. Follow Chris on twitter @cgclaro.

 

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