Mr. Bean's Holiday Steve Bendelack

Mr. Bean's Holiday Steve Bendelack
Mr. Bean’s Holiday opens with our protagonist’s glorious close up — a great big devilish grin, ear to ear — because the church raffle he nearly botched just awarded him a free trip to the Cannes Film Festival in France. Literally seconds after disembarking on the French Riviera, Bean runs afoul majorly with his usual shenanigans. If he’s not roiling and riling every Frenchman who crosses his path, he’s likely spitting up half-gurgled clams into unsuspecting women’s purses. Rest assured this film, like the series, is rife with the same farcical formula for laughs. Humour is abundant in the bonus features, which are actually presented decently. There are deleted scenes aplenty (17 in all), with funnies that you wish replaced the banality of the final cut. "French Beans” is the standard "making of” vignette, which is forgettable because "Beans in Cannes” is the real treat. It’s an interesting look at the filming that took place in Cannes for the "movie within a movie” aspect of the famous festival. Using a real life premiere, the production staff was able to piggyback their shooting schedule with Cannes. How they got away with using the real-life Cannes Theatre is anyone’s guess, but it’s a noble A for effort. In the end however, Holiday is poorly written and seldomly funny (though Willem Dafoe’s role as a serious American indie director is as close to unintentional humour as it gets). Atkinson’s comical ability has clearly aged and it’s a formulaic style of comedy that will only delight the hardcore fans that won’t mind settling. It’s a sad departure from the franchise for the iconic English actor, chiefly because Holiday was his swan song. If you remember, Atkinson promised that this would be his last stint as the bumbling (but loveable) Brit. And there was mass hope by fans that this would be his best, and possibly funniest, paean to date. But go out with a bang, this Bean does not. (Universal)