MONTY PYTHON: ALMOST THE TRUTH, THE LAWYER'S CUT (Eagle Rock DVD): This is all getting far too silly

 |   |  1 min read

Eric Idle: The Bruce's Philosophers Song
MONTY PYTHON: ALMOST THE TRUTH, THE LAWYER'S CUT (Eagle Rock DVD): This is all getting far too silly

If you thought the last word on the Pythons had been the DVD box sets, the CD reissue of their albums and their Autobiography modelled on the Beatles' Anthology book, then . . .

Yes, here at seven and a half hours with all the living Pythons interviewed and reflective -- plus relevant clips, period footage (the Goons) and commentary from fans such as Eddie Izzard, Steve Coogan, Russell Brand and many many others -- is their tele-series version of the Beatles' video/DVD Anthology.

And yes, here too the dead Bea . . . sorry Python . . . is interviewed courtesy of archival footage.

It is a lot of Python, some of it over-analysed, much of it still very funny, and other segments reminding you that humour is often historically contextual. (You doubt it? Try getting a teenager to watch an old Man About the House or I Love Lucy episode.)

Divided into chapters for television screening on the BBC, it covers often very familiar ground but with some interesting new perspectives and large dollops of self-deprecating humour -- and also includes them talking about those albums they made (often, as with the tv show, playing with the expectations and medium they were using, like having parallel grooves on a record as well as stupid covers and titles).

The increasingly funny and angry theme song to each episode by Shirley Bassey (or a soundalike, I'm not sure) is hilarious. 

The films are covered, but you have those already if you are a fan. 

To see John Cleese and Michael Palin in a debate with the pompous Bishop of Southwark (an alcoholic homosexual, "the hypocrite" laughs Cleese now) and an irritated Malcolm Muggeridge (about Life of Brian, of course) is still a delight. As are the various famous -- and sometimes overlooked -- skits. (Hitler in a hotel that looks like Fawlty Towers).

You get to see hints of Fawlty Towers and the origins of the stage show Spamalot too -- but as far as I can see there isn't that hilarious mockumentary short about Venice and the "fucking gondolas".

But then again, at seven and a half hours, and with special features it may be in here somewhere.

All getting a bit silly really, isn't it?

A marathon set that fans won't shy from, but if your idea of real humour is Man About the House or I Love Lucy we can only repeat what Brian says, "fuck off". 

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Film articles index

ARCHITECTURE; THE COMPLETE BOX SET (Five DVDs, Ovation/Southbound)

ARCHITECTURE; THE COMPLETE BOX SET (Five DVDs, Ovation/Southbound)

Although at a first encounter the narration to this series -- 29 major architects and/or buildings in separate episodes over five DVDs -- might seem a little dry and distant, you warm to it as the... > Read more

THE RED RIDING TRILOGY based on the novels by DAVID PEACE (Madman DVD)

THE RED RIDING TRILOGY based on the novels by DAVID PEACE (Madman DVD)

For sheer gruesome, grim and compellingly dark viewing this trilogy of made-for-television films based on the novels of David Peace would take some beating: murder is the backdrop; corruption at... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

More to life than cars and girls?

More to life than cars and girls?

A couple of weeks ago a strange sound came from our modest Mazda Demio so I confidently popped the bonnet. As I stood looking at the unfamiliar coils of metal and rubber it occurred to me it had... > Read more

THE ACT LABEL, SIGNATURE EDITION (2010): Getting their ACT acts together

THE ACT LABEL, SIGNATURE EDITION (2010): Getting their ACT acts together

There is something smart about a record label adopting the idea of generic covers: certainly the distinctive Reid Miles design for covers for Blue Note (frequently using Frank Wolff's photos)... > Read more