If I have one complaint about Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie it’s relatively minor. British comedy tends to be rather formulaic and this is definitely evident in Jennifer Saunders’s new movie about the latest adventures of Edina Monsoon and Patsy Stone. The Globe and Mail was accurate in their rating of three stars out of four and even as a fanatical fan of AbFab humour, I’d be hard pressed to give it any more.
The best part of the movie and what I enjoyed the most were the visual elements, not the rather predictable dialogue and plot. Most of the original cast members were revived along with a long list of wonderful cameos by such celebs as John Hamm, Kate Moss, Stella McCartney, Jerry Hall, Rebel Wilson, Lulu, Baby Spice, Barry Humphries (Dame Edna et al), Joan Collins, Jean-Paul Gaulthier and many others.
The slap stick and unspoken jokes were delicious. Unlike most of us whose morning routine consists of waking up, showering, brushing our teeth, Patsy casually picks up a hypodermic needle and starts injecting her face and inserts a liposuction tube down her pants from her personal in-home machine, while engaging in small talk with Eddie. The costume designer must have had a ball dressing the characters, particularly the eternally incompetent Bubble. Perhaps it says something about my questionable taste in fashion, but I have always envied and admired Patsy’s wardrobe and the clothes she wears in this movie are yummy. Of course having a body like a mannequin helps enormously.
Both Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley are wonderful as Eddie and Patsy and it’s hard to believe nearly twenty-five years have passed since they first introduced their characters. Joanna Lumley is a particular genius at turning a raised eyebrow or subtle nuance of expression into a wicked inside joke. I won’t disclose any of the plot as it’s already “out there” and I would like you to experience the movie with minimal preconceptions. You will find the closing scene reminiscent of the closing scene of Some Like it Hot. Enjoy your popcorn and have fun. I did.
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