An obnoxious DJ becomes the star of a hostage crisis when his radio station is held hostage by a disgruntled, recently fired coworker.
Alan Partridge (2013)
Directed by Declan Lowney
Written by Steve Coogan, Neil Gibbons,
Rob Gibbons, Armando Iannucci
Starring Steve Coogan, Colm Meaney, Tim Key, Felicity Montagu, Nigel Lindsay, Monica Dolan, Karl Theobald
Spin-Off of It's Alan Partridge
Before watching this film, I was unfamiliar with the surprisingly hefty back catalog that introduced the British comedy icon Alan Partridge into pop culture. The best thing about this film is that you don't need to know who he is to enjoy it. Alan Partridge is an entertaining movie on its own, mostly due to Steve Coogan's uproarious yet subtle performance as the eponymous "hero." I've always enjoyed English humor because of its layers and subtlety, and Alan Partridge is yet another hilarious film that falls into that category.
Alan Partridge is a DJ who longs to be globally famous, but for the moment he'll settle for fame in the English town of Norfolk. When his friend and fellow DJ Pat Farrell (Colm Meaney) is fired when the station goes under new management, he takes hostages inside the station and refuses to cooperate with the police. The only person he'll talk to is Alan. So begins an unpredictable and outrageous ride as Alan tries to a) defuse the situation, b) get his friend out of a pretty big jam, and c) figure out a way to turn all of this into an opportunity to get back on television. The performances are all stellar and the script is superb. I didn't think I'd like this one as much as I did, but when I learned that the same brilliant comedic minds behind In the Loop delivered this gem, I knew I was in for a good movie.
This film shows how one man's obnoxious behavior and massive ego can really do some permanent damage in the workplace, especially when someone strolls up with a gun. This film easily could've gone too far or not gone far enough. It ends up in that happy medium that separates English humor from American humor. I'm glad the film ended up being as funny as it was. In fact, it makes me want to track down all the BBC shows that first featured the character. It'd be fun to see just how Steve Coogan managed to get in the mindset of a character that is equal parts charmingly witty and unbearably insufferable.