Yes, today’s theme is religion and philosophy and instead of just sitting here and giving you the benefit of my thought (LOL) I’m going to recommend a programme. Nay, ‘recommend’ is too weak a word: I absolutely INSIST that you watch this on iplayer the very second that you finish reading this post. For here, most unexpectedly, is the most eerily and brilliantly accurate comedy biopic I have ever seen. Directed by Owen Harris (‘Misfits’, ‘Black Mirror’, ‘Skins’) and written by Tony (‘The Thick of it’) Roche, it is in the same mould as the Kenny Everett biopic I blogged about earlier, but even better.
‘Holy Flying Circus’ tells the story of the furore following the release of ‘Life of Brian’. Starring Darren Boyd as Cleese (he’s Dirk Gently’s sidekick in the recent series) and Charles Edwards as Palin (and Palin’s mother) and including Steve Punt as Eric Idle, this film features a style of acting which is uncannily like the real thing: something half-way between interpreting a role and doing an impression. The two stars in particular are so good you’d swear you were watching Palin and Cleese, while Graham Chapman sits and puffs his pipe in the background and makes us all feel nostalgic for when he was alive.
The climax of the film is the famous chat-show, Friday Night and Saturday Morning where Cleese and Palin debate with Malcolm Muggeridge and a Bishop on the morality of the film, chaired by a terminally gentle Tim Rice (Tim Rice?). Here’s a bit of the original:
There is a brilliant, multi-layered script featuring God at the end played with consummate brilliance by Stephen Fry; and lots of subtitles pointing out ‘satire’ and other such Python-nesses.
So I insist that you watch this NOW, before it disappears from the iplayer:
The Bishop looks thoroughly dated and extremely patronising, unlike the other Bishop I encountered unexpectedly yesterday going into the Turkish restaurant on Narborough Rd. Yes, Rob Freeman (for it was he) and Chris were just going in as I was passing, so I nipped in and surprised them at their table. They are dropping in on the Martyrs later so I will catch up with them then. Rob is utterly sensible, very humorous and just about the most down-to-earth bloke you will ever meet. And he’s Bishop of Penrith:
Happy Sunday – enjoy the sunshine. And come on, Andy!