Mr. Bean's Holiday Review
Mr. Bean's Holiday
I will preface this review by simply stating that if you don’t get Mr. Bean, you simply “don’t get” Mr. Bean, and therefore, will in all probability not get this movie. So when you first see Mr. Bean slide the bolt lock on his miniature car, and stand cheerfully in church with his raffle ticket in hand, you better already be smiling along with him or laughing, because whether you like it or not, Bean is going on vacation.
In this film, Mr. Bean’s dialogue never goes far beyond the guttural “hello,” “choo-choo,” and the hallmark self-introduction as simply “Bean.” At the same time, it could be said that for however muted Mr. Bean is in his speech, he is immeasurably exuberant in his actions, which in this movie become exceedingly more and more intricate and at times highly choreographed. What makes every joke work though is the fact that every performer buys into each gag without any hindrance or second thought. By all means, a mock operatic performance should not be this hilarious, but Rowan Atkinson is so profoundly epic in his staging that it works tremendously well. Even the younger actors, usually a terrible weight in most “family” films, have great presence and are dealt with an adept and (in the case of Mr. Bean) careless hand.
Although there is a conceivable lack of dialogue for the most part, there is not one ounce of this film that is lazily constructed. Each choice is a smart and clever one. Even the location of the film in a foreign land is a brilliant choice as it lends Mr. Bean’s speech useless in the first place. Even without words, there is clever and strong writing evident throughout, all the way up to the clever conclusion. Whereas the previous effort to bring Bean to the big screen was essentially a rehash of old material, the majority of this adventure is all-new. Ultimately, the film itself is a fantastic journey that will at the very least enrapture the beauty of the European countryside with a cinematic flair.
As Mr. Bean’s dramatic arrival at his final destination suggests, everything works out perfectly. The film itself is brilliant in it’s design and execution. Frankly, I can’t recommend it more.
Here's Rowan Atkinson at his best: