I can’t say I’ve watched a huge amount of the Ab Fab series in the past but the characters of Edina and Patsy are so ingrained in the consciousness of British Comedy, as is their influence, that I feel like I’ve been watching them for years.
As it is, inevitably, this is the movie version of the sitcom, taking the show and making it bigger and flashier but not really better.
Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley are most certainly the best things about this Film, their performances as spiky and sharp as ever. Lumley, in particular, can bring the biggest laughs, whether mumbling wedding vows or being repeatedly tasered, her performance is funnier than any of the hundreds of cameos that litter the film.
Sadly the rest is either poor or forgettable. The plot is thin, the characters thinner. Forced emotion stumbles before it even begins and each scene feels hollow. At the beginning it doesn’t quite know where it’s going, bumbling about for a while before getting to the plot and it’s directed with little excitement or enthusiasm.
Saunders writes the characters like the characters but without a laugh track to punctuate the jokes, the laughs are either cut short or left to linger for far too long.
The sheer amount of celebrity cameos is also distracting, making you wish you were just back with the central duo. Only the likes of Dawn French and Kathy Burke really get a laugh and still it’s not a big one.
Still, those two leads are great and their mannerisms are simply just amusing to watch as they totter about London and the French Riviera.