1 May 2010

“Why does Noddy have a bell on his hat?”

Cemetery Junction – Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant

Looking at Gervais film past, it’s not looking good. His TV work will always be his best; you can’t really beat The Office and the Extras. I love both, and i love his stand up too, it’s defiantly a standard for the rest of the comedy world. To be that funny and not many people do. Seeing him live as well, you can tell he’s genuinely funny. But his film choices have been lacklustre to say the least. The Invention of Lying? It was bad, it had a great cast, but i don’t remember once laughing out loud like i have done for everything he’s done. I’m not a massive fan of the Night at the Museum films, its childish fun i guess, but it’s not something i would exclaim as being wonderful. Ghost Town was decent, it wasn’t amazing, but it was okay. It had scenes where it showed the potential Gervais has in films, but it seems only after three films that he’s playing the same character. And with the newly released Cemetery Junction, would Gervais be the lead and steal the show playing the same character he is seemingly trying to place in all of his roles?

The answer is no, he doesn’t take the lead in the film but he does play a different character. I think he plays it perfectly, a dad type figure, someone who isn’t embarrassed or a social outcast, he’s a factory worker, and he plays it well. Not being the lead, Gervais allows three unknowns to take the centre stage playing Freddie, Bruce and Snork. They are wonderful new actors, each with different characteristics, and each having their paths in the film, sometimes its twist and turns you can’t see coming but overall it’s a refreshing thing to see. The film is basically about three lads in Reading, living in the 70’s who want to get out of the town after becoming bored of working nine to five, drinking and fighting. Each one has a different story of what they want to do and each one has a successful ending. It also has strong performances from Ralph Fiennes or Lord Voldemort as he is known on the street, Julia Davis, Emily Watson and Matthew Goode. The music is stand out too for a British film, showing true talent in the musicians and songs chosen to represent that era.

I reckon the idea came from Merchant who i believe to be the sensible one, the one with the writing talents and directing skills. The one who puts Gervais on the right path to creating something successful and funny. But maybe I’m wrong, we will have to see his next film or television show, see if it turns out to be a pile of shit or something decent.


Simon Childs

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