• Gareth Crook

Stan & Ollie (2018)

I’ve never seen an entire Laurel & Hardy film. I’ve seen bits of course mostly from TV, but you don’t get any sense for the people really. That said do you ever with comedians, that’s the point I guess, an act is an act. Coogan’s accent to start seems all over the place, but then Laurel was an Englishman in America, which I didn’t know, see I told you I knew very little about these guys. This though is wonderful from the very beginning. The reenactments of classic scenes are delightful and it’s impossible not to smile at their charm. Of course this isn’t really about comedy... well it’s the backdrop for sure, granted a substantial one, but it’s more to do with friendships, trust, art and artists struggling for their art. It’s quite sad as the duo in the twilight of their career, find themselves cast out of the Hollywood machine and trying to rekindle the magic on a tour of Britain. It’s heartwarming and probably the only thing I’ve seen with John C. Reilly that I’ve really loved. This might be because much of it is a hard luck story, even when things are looking up, there are tough knock backs. Coogan is fantastic adding another great film performance alongside his TV credits and really does largely carry the film. It’s a love letter, to a sometimes difficult relationship, resilience and a truly special talent. I laughed, I smiled, I cried. Pure magic!

8/10



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