The Couch Potato Report
This week in The Couch Potato Report ñ Freddy, Jason and English. Johnny English.
Rowan Atkinson, one of the worldís funniest performers, is the titular twit.
Mr. Bean is known around the world, and because of the role so is Mr. Atkinson.
Itís a legacy that most performers who have a signature role might not be able to rise above. But Atkinson hasnít spent his career trying NOT To be Mr. Bean, heís enjoyed a successful run in movies and TV shows playing a variation of the Bean person we know and love.
Rowan Atkinson has made me laugh for years in movies such as FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL, LOVE ACTUALLY and RAT RACE. And before he was ever even thought of as Mr. Bean he performed in such BBC shows as BLACKADDER and NOT THE NINE OíCLOCK NEWS.
But its because of Mr. Bean that heís beloved worldwide.
Itís also because of Bean that a film like JOHNNY ENGLISH is worth seeing.
Rowan Atkinson stars as JOHNNY ENGLISH in this spoof of James Bond and other spy films.
JOHNNY ENGLISH isn’t as funny as Mr. Bean, or BLACKADDER or NOT THE NINE OíCLOCK NEWS for that matter, but it is funny.
Not as funny as Mike Myersí AUSTIN POWERS, but funny.
While Myers created a whole new character for Austin Powers Rowan Atkinson has just given his JOHNNY ENGLISH the best characteristics of his past work.
From Mr. Bean JOHNNY ENGLISH gets his muscle and face twitchings and helplessness, and courtesy of BLACKADDER he is equipped with plenty of nasty but harmless remarks.
There are also elements of Peter Sellerís Inspector Clouseau. JOHNNY ENGLISH is an ‘idiot’ who happens by sheer good luck to solve a case against all the odds. Like Clouseau he also has an annoyed superior and a faithful deputy who inevitably saves the day.
The story in JOHNNY ENGLISH is uneven in places, but through sheer good luck it all works out fine at the end.
John Malkovich plays the villain and pop singer Nathalie Imbruglia is quite good as English’s sidekick.
Plainly stated, JOHNNY ENGLISH is a funny movie. Itís Rowan Atkinson’s movie, tailored for his abilities and talent, one that will leave you with a genuine smile. Maybe even two.
You likley won’t smile as funny is not a word many would ever use to describe the horror movie franchises A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET or FRIDAY THE 13th.
In the 80ís and early 90ís these movie series raked up big bucks no whammies at the box office.
But as the nineties drew to a close their returns continued to diminish. In an attempt to capitalize on the continuing popularity of the two seriesí anti-heroes Freddy Krueger, of the NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET films, and Jason Vorhees, from FRIDAY THE 13th, they have been put together in a film that is creatively titled FREDDY VS. JASON.
In FREDDY VS. JASON Jason and Freddy battle from Elm Street to Crystal Lake. if you donít CLEARLY UNDERSTAND that reference, then you should probably stay away from this film.
If you do get it, and you want to know if this horror film is any good, well Iíll say this: I have no regrets about seeing it and Iím glad I did. Good? Maybe not. Satisfying? Definitely!
JOHNNY ENGLISH and FREDDY VS. JASON are available to rent and own at a video store near you right now.
Coming Next Week On Video and DVD
In 2003 Kevin Costner returned to the directorial form he displayed with DANCES WITH WOLVES. It came in a beautiful western called OPEN RANGE. Shot right here in Western Canada it also stars Robert Duvall and Anette Bening.
Also next week, Antonio Banderas, Salma Hayek and Johnny Depp star in the conclusion of director Robert Rodriguezí Mariachi trilogy. This follow up to EL MARIACHI and DESPERADO is called ONCE UPON A TIME IN MEXICO.
Enjoy the movies and I’ll see you on the couch!
The Couch Potato Report