Main Plot Points:
- Michael Winterbottom’s largely improvised 2010 film, The Trip, took comedians Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon—or semifictionalized versions thereof—on a restaurant tour around northern England. In this witty and incisive follow-up, Winterbottom reunites the pair for a new culinary road trip, retracing the steps of the Romantic poets’ grand tour of Italy and indulging in some sparkling banter and impersonation-offs.
- Rewetting our palates from the earlier film, the characters enjoy mouthwatering meals in gorgeous settings from Liguria to Capri while riffing on subjects as varied as Batman’s vocal register, the artistic merits of “Jagged Little Pill,” and, of course, the virtue of sequels.
- The Trip to Italy effortlessly melds the brilliant comic interplay between Coogan and Brydon into quieter moments of self-reflection, letting audiences into their insightful ruminations on the nuances of friendship and the juggling of family and career. The result is a biting portrait of modern-day masculinity.
What We Thought:
- The Trip was a surprisingly funny little film I saw a few years back and I was highly looking forward to its sequel, The Trip to Italy. After seeing the film, it didn’t disappoint.
- Neither film should actually work. It’s two guys going around eating and doing impressions, but I genuinely laughed out loud at both. They continue their Michael Caine battle which leads to what might be the best bit of both movies. The Dark Knight Rises came out after the first film and this leads to them trying to do the better Tom Hardy/Bane and Christian Bale/Batman impersonations. Easily the funniest part of the movie.
- This time around it’s Rob Brydon that seems to be the bigger “star” in the film. His career is heading up with a potential new “role” in an American film. Steve Coogan seems to be losing his drive and doesn’t seem all that upset over his show ending. The first film had Coogan being the alpha if you will.
- This time the film’s backdrop is Italy (hence the title). Winterbottom paints a breathtaking picture with beautiful country sides and an even amazing shore line. Just like the food itself plays a character in each film, you watch the backdrop as much as the actors. As someone who grew up on the ocean, the scenery in this is just amazing. The ocean is a beautiful thing, I highly recommend it.
- Coogan may be the better known actor here in the States, but neither film would work without Brydon as his friend/companion/foil. They have fantastic chemistry and play off each other so well. Plus who knew they both could sing Alanis Morissette?
- The Trip to Italy isn’t for everyone, but for those familiar with the first, it’s a must see. I laughed. I was awestruck by the scenery. I laughed again. I got hungry watching it. I’ll own it on DVD to go with the first one as well.
Notable Cast & Crew:
- Steve Coogan
- Rob Brydon
Recommended if You Like:
- The Trip
- Italian Backdrops
- 2 Guys Discussing Food and Doing Impressions
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