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ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING

SYNOPSIS: In order to determine if they should destroy the Earth or not, eccentric aliens endow Neil Clarke (Simon Pegg), an unassuming teacher in North London, with the ability to make absolutely anything he wishes for happen. Once Neil realizes he has these new special powers, it takes him a few goes to get the hang of it, while the aliens are watching.

Review by Louise Keller:
Some wonderfully madcap ideas are wasted in this jumbled mess of a film that plays a bit like a sitcom at which everything except the kitchen sink is thrown. It's a real shame because I love the sense of ridiculous that Terry Jones' Monty Python brand of humour offers - a mix of puerile and black. The film plays out like a series of skits that offers a few chuckles here and there, but in the final analysis falls faultily flat and is frightfully forgettable.

Everything hangs around Simon Pegg's sweet but hapless school teacher and would-be writer Neil, who cannot score on any level - at work or at play. He is unable to control his unruly students, get on the right side of his headmaster, get his book written and most importantly, get the girl. The girl is Neil's downstairs neighbor Catherine (Kate Beckinsale) who is seemingly fielding potential suitors from all directions. Grant, the gun-crazy American colonel played by Rob Riggle is the most visible and irritating, while Beckinsale lacks the comedic flair that would make her presence soar. By contrast, Joanna Lumley knows all about comedy and her cameo is far too short. The action flits back and forth between colourful, lumpy aliens in outer space (voiced by the Monty Python team), and a series of unlikely mishaps by Neil's clueless random earthling, as selected by the aliens.

Low-brow humour is the starting point for Neil to discover his newfound powers - that he can wish for absolutely anything. In this case it involves dog poop from Neil's mutt Dennis (voiced by Robin Williams). Dennis (played by Mojo the dog) steals the scenes and it's credit to Pegg that we are able to somewhat suspect our disbelief during the scenes in which the (now) talking dog and Neil have exchanges. The plot strand involving Neil's best friend Ray (Sanjee Bhaskar) - that his would-be girlfriend worships him - is mildly amusing, but grossly overdone. The same goes for everything. Absolutely everything.

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 1
Mixed: 0

ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING (PG)
(UK/US, 2015)

CAST: Simon Pegg, Kate Beckinsale, Robin Williams, John Cleese, Terry Gillam, Joanna Lumley, Rob Riggle, Ryan Oliva, Eric Idle, Eddie Izzard,

VOICES: Michael Palin, Terry Jones

PRODUCER: Bill Jones, Ben Timlett

DIRECTOR: Terry Jones

SCRIPT: Gavin Scott, Terry Jones

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Peter Hannan

EDITOR: Julian Rdd

MUSIC: George Fenton

PRODUCTION DESIGN: James Acheson

RUNNING TIME: 85 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Icon

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: November 19, 2015







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