COMEDY; 1hr 30min
STARRING: Steve Coogan, Colm Meaney
Off the air: Coogan
Alan Partridge (Coogan) has been around the block and back, clocking two-odd decades as a radio and TV personality-plus. His first feature film, co-written by Coogan, finds 55-year-old Alan in fine fettle behind the DJ’s console on his Norwich home turf. Everyone has their off days, of course, and Alan begins with sacked DJ Pat Farrell (Meaney) storming the newly managed North Norfolk Digital radio station with a rifle and corralling a roomful of hostages. Deluded Pat will only communicate with police through Alan —who, unknown to Pat, was behind his dismissal. The police resignedly go along with this, which is their first mistake. Self-promoting, lily-livered and altogether slippery, Alan isn’t the man you’d want anywhere near your corner.
Mixing dead-straight procedural with loco behaviour, director Declan Lowney keeps the Good Ship Partridge on a perpetually cresting roll. Here’s cheers to Coogan, whose energy levels are off the charts and who never shuts up, to Meaney for layering menace with pathos and to the lads in blue for keeping a straight face when everyone around them is more or less right off theirs.