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Steve Coogan’s comic creation Alan Partridge appears for the first time on cinema screens. Gone are the ‘Aha’s and the Michael Parkinson style blazer and tie which Partridge had been well known for. He’s gone from Chat show host, his own television series, published author to disc jockey.
After his live talk show was cancelled, Partridge has since moved on and become a regional disc jockey for Norfolk Digital Radio. Recently Partridge had his own brief online slot on 'Mid- Morning Matters’ with Simon (Tim Key) his radio sidekick, whom he often rebukes for his inappropriate banter on air. Pat Farrell (Colm Meaney) a late-shift disc jockey informs Partridge that Norfolk Digital is being taken over by Shape, a giant conglomerate. Partridge encourages the new executive board that if anyone should be sacked it should be Farrell, not himself. Angered and hell bent on revenge Farrell takes a number of hostages at the stations launch party. As the siege escalates inside the radio station, armed police respond to the crisis by surrounding the radio station. Partridge on Farrell’s request becomes the chief police negotiator on condition that three hostages are released. Realising the potential for the television exposure he so desires, Partridge agrees to become the chief negotiator, making him an unlikely action hero if wasn’t for his general cowardice and constant self-promotion. He does have good points though such as his flippancy, rudeness, and of course not forgetting his egotistical and insecure personality. While the police think he could only do the right thing in a siege, he only makes the crisis worse than it already is.
Overall the film has a well-crafted script from writers, Coogan, Armando Iannucci, Peter Baynham and Neil and Rob Gibbons adding plenty of Partridge one liners. Declan Lowney former Father Ted star, is a very good director who makes full use of slapstick comedy and action scenes. It’s hilariously funny throughout, Coogan who having portrayed Partridge for over twenty years comes across as a completely unbelievable action hero. Over those years we have seen him experience the fictional character go through numerous highs and lows. Sean Pertwee plays a tough talking police officer who gives a very convincing performance in the film. Meaney, who has long list of acting roles to his name, is very good at playing the troubled disc jockey. Felicity Montague is again playing the role of Lynn from Partridge’s television series; she gives a good performance as Partridge’s dogsbody. In comparison to the constant flow of American films which dominate the cinemas. Partridge first full feature length film succeeds for the first time getting away with the last laugh.
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