Mr. Bean’s Holiday
starring Rowan Atkinson, Emma De Caunes, Max Baldry, Karel Roden and Willem Dafoe
screenplay by Hamish McColl and Robin Driscoll
directed by Steve Bendelack
I liked Rowan Atkinson’s old BBC show when he was much younger and the Mr. Bean character was still fresh. The first Mr. Bean movie - set in America and co-starring Peter McNicol - was also entertainingly fresh because it threw Mr. Bean onto a much bigger canvas for the first time and it was funny to see how Atkinson played the character in a bigger story and his first widespread exposure to a non-U.K. audience. So I was looking forward a little bit to the long-overdue sequel, Mr. Bean’s Holiday, expecting the same freshness that we saw in the first Bean movie. But I was disappointed. The same old gags don’t entertain me and it was just boring.
Mr. Bean wins a paid trip to the French Riviera (Cannes). He travels to Paris, gets lost, misses his train, loses his money and his passport, gets lost, acts like a typical English goofball on vacation on the continent for the first time, has some misadventures and meets a lot of interesting characters along the way. In many ways, this film is not a vehicle for Rowan Atkinson so much as it is for Max Baldry’s - the little boy who ends up traveling with Bean south to the Cannes Film Festival.
As in the first film, Mr. Bean comes out of a really ugly situation as a hero in the end - the understated Englishman, embarrassingly falling into success.
The movie was not worthwhile, but the soundtrack was, and for me the highlights of the movie were the Hawaii 5-0 theme music used to spice up Bean’s southward trek as a hitchhiker picked up by a beautiful woman (Sabine – Bean, get it?), as well as the song, “Crash.” Unless you’re crazy, don’t bother with any more Bean. It’s past the time for Rowan Atkinson to devote his career to other acting projects.