Life on the Road

Life on the Road

Ricky Gervais (2016)

91min
15 Certificate
Sat 29 Jun 10:20pm - 11:50pm BBC One (not Wales)
See Repeats
Sat 29 Jun, 11:05pm - 12:40am BBC One Wales
HD SUB WIDE
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Review

Our Score
Thirteen years separate landmark BBC sitcom The Office and this film spin-off that finds erstwhile management bod David Brent reduced to tampon salesman. Writer/director Ricky Gervais slips back into the role with ease and using the same mockumentary style also shows off his musical talents as Brent takes a holiday and hires a tour bus to ferry his band around Reading. Being based in Slough, this costs him more in expenses and dignity than in petrol. There isn't a plot as such, just a series of toe-curling stage turns while pressure builds backstage. Rapper Doc Brown re-teams with Gervais following Equality Street, their hilarious 2013 music video for Comic Relief, explaining that he had signed a management deal with Brent only for the wannabe entertainer to take over the show. Ditties like Native American ("soar like an eagle, sit like a pelican") are wryly funny, with punch-lines cleverly delivered to the beat, but Brent is still at his cringe-making best in the offices of Lavichem. What could have been This Is Spinal Tap meets Alan Partridge doesn't quite catch fire and Gervais doesn't fully exploit the big-screen canvas. But, as a portrait of a tragicomic hero - snigger-inducing yet ultimately heart-warming - it's an irresistible bit of chilled-out entertainment.

Summary

More than a decade on from his appearance in documentary series The Office, a film crew is once again following the life of David Brent. He is now working as a rep for a cleaning-goods distributor, but harbours dreams of making it big in the music business. Acting on this, he takes three weeks off work and tours with a new-look version of Foregone Conclusion, the band he fronted in the 1990s. Comedy, directed by and starring Ricky Gervais.

Cast & Crew

David Brent Ricky Gervais
Dom Johnson Ben Bailey Smith
Dan Harvey Tom Basden
Nigel Martin Tom Bennett
Pauline Gray Jo Hartley
Drummer Andy Burrows
Miriam Rebecca Gethings
Jerry "Jezza" Collins Andrew Brooke
Karen Parashar Mandeep Dhillon
Serena Wilson Abbie Murphy
Dr Vivienne Keating Nina Sosanya
Briony Jones Diane Morgan
DJ Kevin Bishop
Director Ricky Gervais
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Entertainment OneGuidance: SwearingAvailable on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 19 Aug 2016
Comedy