|Mr. Bean's Holiday|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Steve Bendelack|
|Story by||Simon McBurney|
by Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson
|Music by||Howard Goodall|
|Edited by||Tony Cranstoun|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Box office||$229.7 million|
Mr. Bean's Holiday is a 2007 family comedy film directed by Steve Bendelack and written by Hamish McColl and Robin Driscoll. It is a British-French-American venture produced by StudioCanal, Working Title Films, Tiger Aspect Films and Universal Pictures. Based on the British television series Mr. Bean and a stand-alone sequel to Bean (1997), the film stars Rowan Atkinson in the title role, Max Baldry, Emma de Caunes and Willem Dafoe.
The film was theatrically released on 24 August 2007 in the United States to mixed reviews from critics but was a box office success, having grossed $229.7 million against a $25 million budget. The film was released in the United Kingdom on 30 March 2007 and topped the country's box office for the next two weekends, before being dethroned by Wild Hogs.
Following a misunderstanding involving a taxi at the Gare du Nord, Bean is forced to make his way on foot towards the Gare de Lyon from La Defense to board his train to Cannes. However, a vending machine prevents him from boarding and he misses his train. While waiting for the next one, he dines at Le Train Bleu where he unwittingly orders langoustines and oysters to which he eats one of the langoustines whole and pours the oysters he took a dislike to into a nearby woman's handbag while pretending to eat them, which gives her a nasty surprise when she reaches into it to get her phone when it rings.
Back on the platform, Bean asks a Russian film director named Emil Dachevsky (Karel Roden) to use his camcorder to film him boarding the train but they spend so much time retaking the shot that the train starts to leave. Although Bean manages to get onto the train, the doors close before Emil could get on. Therefore, Emil's son Stepan (Max Baldry) is left on board the train without his father and upon meeting Bean he initially refuses to befriend him as a result of causing his father's misfortune.
At the next station, the train leaves without Bean when he goes to retrieve his video camera from Stepan who had somehow got hold of it and disembarked earlier. The train Emil has boarded does not stop at the station and he instead holds up a sign showing a mobile number, but the last two digits are covered by his fingers resulting in attempts at calling the number prove worthless. Bean and Stepan then board the next train stopping but get kicked out as Bean accidentally left his wallet and ticket on the telephone box at the previous station.
Attempts at busking such as lip-syncing to Puccini's "O mio babbino caro" prove successful and Bean buys himself and Stephan food and bus tickets to Cannes. Unfortunately, Bean accidentally loses his ticket that attaches itself to a chicken's leg in which he gives chase to via a bicycle. Upon arriving at a farm where he finds more chickens and discovering that his bicycle was crushed by a tank, he is forced to continue the journey on foot. Bean soon falls asleep as a result of being exhausted from walking and wakes up the next day on what appears to be a quaint French village being attacked by Wehrmacht accompanied by an StuG III, but is actually a film set for a yogurt commercial directed by Carson Clay (Willem Dafoe). Bean ends up as an extra in the commercial but is fired after Carson Clay discovers his video camera during filming. When Bean's camera battery dies, he recharges it but accidentally ends up destroying the set in an explosion.
Bean is then is offered a lift to Cannes by a Mini identical to his own driven by Sabine (Emma de Caunes), an aspiring actress on her way to the 59th Cannes Film Festival where the film in which she makes her debut as an extra will be presented. When they stop at a service station, Bean finds Stepan dancing in a cafe with a band to which Sabine agrees to take him with them assuming that Stepan is Bean's son while Stepan thinks Sabine is Bean's fiancee. Bean uses Sabine's mobile phone as a final attempt to call Emil again with no use and when Sabine falls asleep at the wheel, Bean ends up driving the Mini through the night.
The next morning, they reach Cannes. When Sabine goes into a petrol station to change for the premiere, she sees Bean's photo on a news program where he is suspected of kidnapping Stepan while Sabine is Bean's accomplice. Since the premiere in Cannes is scheduled to start in one hour, she decides not to go to the police to clear the misunderstandings in which therefore to sneak into the premiere, Stepan and Bean disguise themselves as Sabine's daughter and mother respectively and manage to sneak past the police.
During the premiere, the audience is bored stiff by Carson's shameless vanity production while Sabine is distraught that her scene has been cut from the film. To cheer Sabine up Bean plugs his video camera into the projector, causing it to project his video diary. The bizarre tale it tells fits director Carson Clay's narration well and Carson Clay, Sabine and Bean receive standing ovations as Stepan is reunited with his parents. After the screening, Bean leaves the building by the back door and finally makes his way onto the Cannes beach. A montage of Bean playing by the water's edge while Sabine is interviewed, Carson Clay attempts to mimic Bean's unorthodox filming methods and Stepan relaxes with his family plays and the film ends with the entire cast and background crowd miming a musical finale with the song "La Mer".
In a post-credits scene, Bean writes "FIN" in the sand with his foot and films it until the sea washes the words away and his camera's battery dies again.
In February 2001 before filming began on Scooby-Doo, Rowan Atkinson was lured into making a second film about Mr. Bean going on an Australian adventure under the working title Down Under Bean. However, this idea was dropped for Mr. Bean's Holiday. The film began shooting on 15 May 2006 under the working title French Bean.
In March 2005, news of the film were released suggesting that it would be written by Simon McBurney but in December 2005, Atkinson stated that the screenplay was being written by himself and his long time collaborator Richard Curtis. The screenplay was later confirmed to have been written by Robin Driscoll and Hamish McColl while the story was instead written by McBurney.
The film's music was written by Howard Goodall. It has a symphonic orchestration which is a sophisticated score instead of the original television series' tendency to simple musical repetitions and features catchy leitmotifs for particular characters or scenes. The film's theme song was "Crash" by Matt Willis.
It was the official film for Red Nose Day 2007, with money from the film going towards the charity Comic Relief. Prior to the film's release, a new and exclusive Mr. Bean sketch titled Mr. Bean's Wedding was broadcast on the telethon for Comic Relief on BBC One on 16 March 2007.
The official premiere took place at the Odeon Leicester Square, in London on Sunday, 25 March and helped to raise money for both Comic Relief and the Oxford Children's Hospital Appeal charity. Universal Pictures released a teaser trailer for the film in November 2006 and launched an official website online the following month.
Mr. Bean's Holiday was released on DVD and HD DVD on 27 November 2007. The DVD version is in separate widescreen and pan and scan for the markets formats in the United States. The DVD charted at No. 1 on the DVD chart in the United Kingdom on its week of release.
There are fifteen deleted scenes in the film. The first scene shows Bean accidentally spilling coffee on a laptop in front of two sleeping men in which upon cleaning it by licking the screen and wiping the keyboard with napkins, he leaves just upon one of the men wakes up and blames the other man for destroying his laptop, which was only seen on trailers and TV spots for the film, although the U.S. version of the film has it in-place of the vending machine scene. The second scene shows Bean tricking a man to get a train ticket and staying with Stepan on the train.
The fourth one shows Bean carrying Stepan all the way through a plaza. The fifth one shows Sabine going off with her emotions and almost being run over by a truck, Bean doing silly moves along the road (which are later seen in Carson Clay's Playback Time), playing with the shadows in the morning, miming his journey to Stepan at the cafeteria, being menaced by a projectionist at the Cannes Film Festival (at the playing of Clay's movie), accidentally cutting the film roll and trying to stick it again and Carson Clay discovering the film roll accumulating at the projector's room. The damaged film is still seen lying next to the projector in the final cut though it is not explained. Finally Bean is seen dancing at the beach, a scene that was replaced by the characters singing "La Mer".
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 52% based on 113 reviews with an average rating of 5.5/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Mr. Bean's Holiday means well, but good intentions can't withstand the 90 minutes of monotonous slapstick and tired, obvious gags." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 56 out of 100 based on 26 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale.
BBC film critic Paul Arendt gave the film 3 out of 5 stars, saying "It's hard to explain the appeal of Mr. Bean. At first glance, he seems to be moulded from the primordial clay of nightmares: a leering man-child with a body like a tangle of tweed-coated pipe cleaners and the gurning, window-licking countenance of a suburban sex offender. It's a testament to Rowan Atkinson's skill that, by the end of the film he seems almost cuddly." Philip French of The Observer referred to the character of Mr. Bean as a "dim-witted sub-Hulot loner" and said the plot involves Atkinson "getting in touch with his retarded inner child". French also said "the best joke is taken directly from Tati's Jour de Fete." Wendy Ide of The Times gave the film 2 out of 5 stars and said "It has long been a mystery to the British, who consider Bean to be, at best, an ignoble secret weakness, that Rowan Atkinson's repellent creation is absolutely massive on the Continent." Ide said parts of the film are reminiscent of City of God, The Straight Story, and said two scenes are "clumsily borrowed" from Pee-wee's Big Adventure. Ide also wrote that the jokes are weak and one gag "was past its sell-by date ten years ago".
Steve Rose of The Guardian gave the film 2 out of 5 stars, said the film was full of awfully weak gags, and "In a post-Borat world, surely there's no place for Bean's antiquated fusion of Jacques Tati, Pee-Wee Herman and John Major?", while Colm Andrew of the Manx Independent said "the flimsiness of the character, who is essentially a one-trick pony, starts to show" and his "continual close-up gurning into the camera" becomes tiresome. Peter Rainer of The Christian Science Monitor gave the film a "B" and said, "Since Mr. Bean rarely speaks a complete sentence, the effect is of watching a silent movie with sound effects. This was also the dramatic ploy of the great French director-performer Jacques Tati, who is clearly the big influence here." Amy Biancolli of the Houston Chronicle gave the film 3 out of 4 stars, saying "Don't mistake this simpleton hero, or the movie's own simplicity, for a lack of smarts. Mr. Bean's Holiday is quite savvy about filmmaking, landing a few blows for satire." Biancolli said the humour is "all elementally British and more than a touch French. What it isn't, wasn't, should never attempt to be, is American. That's the mistake made by Mel Smith and the ill-advised forces behind 1997's Bean: The Movie."
Ty Burr of the Boston Globe said "Either you'll find [Atkinson] hilarious--or he'll seem like one of those awful, tedious comedians who only thinks he's hilarious." Burr also said "There are also a few gags stolen outright from Tati", but concluded "Somewhere, Jacques Tati is smiling." Tom Long of The Detroit News said "Watching 90 minutes of this stuff--we're talking broad, broad comedy here--may seem a bit much, but this film actually picks up steam as it rolls along, becoming ever more absurd." and also "Mr. Bean offers a refreshingly blunt reminder of the simple roots of comedy in these grim, overly manufactured times."
Suzanne Condie Lambert of The Arizona Republic said, "Atkinson is a gifted physical comedian. And the film is a rarity: a kid-friendly movie that was clearly not produced as a vehicle for selling toys and video games", but also said, "It's hard to laugh at a character I'm 95 percent sure is autistic." Lawrence Toppman of The Charlotte Observer gave the film 2½ stars out of 4 and said "If you like [the character], you will certainly like Mr. Bean's Holiday, a 10-years-later sequel to Bean. I found him intermittently funny yet almost unrelentingly creepy", and also "Atkinson doesn't have the deadpan elegance of a Buster Keaton or the wry, gentle physicality of a Jacques Tati (whose Mr. Hulot's Holiday inspired the title). He's funniest when mugging shamelessly..."
Ruthe Stein of the San Francisco Chronicle said that "the disasters instigated by Bean's haplessness quickly become tiresome and predictable" but said that one scene later in the film is worth sticking around for. Elizabeth Weitzman of the New York Daily News gave the film 2 out of 4 stars and said "If you've never been particularly fond of Atkinson's brand of slapstick, you certainly won't be converted by this trifle." and also "If the title sounds familiar, it's because Atkinson intends his movie to be an homage to the 1953 French classic Mr. Hulot's Holiday. Mr. Hulot was played by one of the all-time great physical comedians, Jacques Tati, and that movie is a genuine delight from start to finish. This version offers a few laughs and an admirable commitment to old-fashioned fun." Phil Villarreal of the Arizona Daily Star gave the film 2 stars and said "If you've seen 10 minutes of Rowan Atkinson's Mr. Bean routine, you've seen it all", and "The Nazi stuff is a bit out of place in a G-rated movie. Or any movie, really", later calling Atkinson "a has-Bean". Claudia Puig of USA Today gave the film 1½ stars out of 4 and said "If you've been lobotomised or have the mental age of a kindergartener, Mr. Bean's Holiday is viable comic entertainment" and also, "The film, set mostly in France, pays homage to Jacques Tati, but the mostly silent gags feel like watered-down Bean."
|29th Young Artist Awards (2008)||Best Performance in a Feature Film - Supporting Young Actor||Max Baldry||Nominated|
|First National Movie Awards (2007)||Comedy or Musical and Best Comedy||Nominated|