The Jolly Boys' Last Stand Review
By Christopher Null
In general it's probably a terrible idea to put the words "jolly boys" in your movie title. But this is a Brit-flick, a Brit-com, as it were, kind of a cross between Four Weddings and a Funeral and Jackass.
And there's something too that. It's awfully British and strange, but The Jolly Boys' Last Stand has something engaging that defies its rather basic premise. And here it is: A group of "lads," (that is, "dudes") find they're getting older and still up to their same drunken antics. But one of their membership, Spider (Andy Serkis) -- aka "El Presidente" -- sees that this isn't really going anywhere, and when he decides to get married and hunker down at work, the rest of the group starts to wonder if their leader isn't going astray. The best man decides to make a congratulations video for Spider, but his real goal is to get him to realize how much fun the life he's leaving behind is.
The film almost exclusively takes the form of this video footage, and what a parade of oddities Spider's lads are. Stoners, lunatics, drunks, and go-nowhere idiots... who can blame him for getting out? Of course, the idea here is that you don't really care if Spider gets married or not. You're just supposed to laugh at his friends. And laugh we do. They're morons to a one, confused and clueless.
It's charming, but the film shines the most when Serkis is on screen, as the best man is also capturing his flailing attempts to fit in in Corporate Britain, which seem to end up with Spider's pants around his ankles more often than not. Throw in a pre-Ali G appearance by Sacha Baron Cohen, and you've got the makings of a cult classic that's frequently funny, frequently just plain puzzling.
Facts and Figures
In Theaters: Friday 18th August 2000
Cast & Crew
Director: Christopher Payne
Screenwriter: Christopher Payne