Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie

Director: Mandie Fletcher (2016)

Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley stagger into cinemas in the big screen version of their little lamented TV show.

It’s smug, self regarding, laboured, rushed, cheap and never funny.

The pair star as champagne swilling, cash strapped, celeb haunting idiots Edina and Patsy, an obnoxious PR guru and her bessie mate magazine editor.

The characters started life as a sketch on The French And Saunders Show (1990). A sitcom series was commissioned for the BBC and ran for three series from 1992 to 1995, with intermittent specials through to 2012.

Within the first five minutes the loathsome pair have interrupted a fashion show and fallen drunk out of a taxi. So normal service is resumed.

The cackling, snorting duo cause a mini media storm when Edina accidentally pushes Kate Moss off a wall and into the Thames.

With the model presumed dead, Edina and Patsy head to Cannes to escape the media furore and find a rich husband or two.

Attempts at giving Edina some depth are laughable, but not in a good way.

Series regulars Julia Sawalha, June Whitfield, Jane Horrocks are pressed back into action for little effect, except perhaps for offering moral support to Saunders who also wrote the script.

Neither the writing and performances have aged well. Jokes involve people walking into walls, wearing funny outfits and swearing.

Adding stale references to twitter, tazers and vaping fail to freshen the air of desperation which hangs over this sorry exercise in sycophantic snivelling to the fashion industry.

There’s a legion of cameos such as Stella McCartney, Alexa Chung, Sadie Frost and Suki Waterhouse. The inclusion of people like this should be the punchline of jokes. They shouldn’t be feted for turning up and being themselves.

Fans of the show may possibly find something to enjoy but for everyone else it’s a witless, wretched waste of time and energy. Especially mine.

@ChrisHunneysett

 

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