The Trip to Greece by Michael Winterbottom [6/10]

Is “The Trip to Greece” the last of the four “Trip” movies featuring Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon, playing fictionalized versions of themselves on whirlwind gourmet travelogues? It seems to be and perhaps the time has come, for the premise was always threadbare at best, and all the best jokes have been said. This time the pair pretend to retrace the voyage of Odysseus, an excuse for voluptuous scenery shots, brief clips of busy gourmet chefs, repartee between mouthfuls, repartee while driving, and the odd, slightly emotive scenes of the two in between. Michael Winterbottom is a superb director and he imbues this film, like the others, with an indie slant even while the cinematography and scene shifting are impeccable. But hey, we “Trip” lovers are not glued to the screen for any of that, what we want is spirited bickering, inspired wordplay, and voice imitations nonpareil. As usual, I watched with a perpetual half smile, nodding occasionally at cleverness, interspersed with laughing out loud. When Brydon and Coogan strike a motherlode, they are very, very funny. Overall, “The Trip to Greece” is definitely for fans and is engaging, subdued entertainment for first-timers.

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