Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie, directed by Mandie Fletcher, is based on the TV show Absolutely Fabulous, created by Jennifer Saunders. I grew up on Ab Fab and various other British sitcoms, whether or not they were ‘appropriate’ for my age. (Many, such as this, likely weren’t, but I enjoyed them). I have a huge soft spot for Eddy (Saunders) and Patsy (Joanna Lumley) and everyone else in their world, so I was tentatively looking forward to this film.
I had a feeling this wouldn’t blow me away, and it didn’t, but it was fun enough and not as terrible as many have found it to be.
When the jokes fall flat they fall right on their face, much as Eddy herself is prone to do. Some of the ‘jokes’ were just outright offensive (which isn’t surprising), and obviously trying to keep the humour ‘up to date’, but there were a lot of good laughs, too. Ab Fab is really better in the format of a TV show – the humour doesn’t stretch well enough over a feature – but the slapstick and parody that I love kept me interested.
It was fun to see all the old familiar faces, including my favourite Bubble (played brilliantly by Jane Horrocks) and Magda, Fleur and Catriona are always good for a laugh, as is Mrs Monsoon. Julia Sawalha returns as Eddy’s long-suffering daughter, Saffy, still as square as ever, the perfect foil to Eddy.
My favourite thing about Eddy is that she’ll have these revelatory moments (usually brought about by Saffy, who is her voice of reason and conscience, the angel on her shoulder, with Patsy being the devil on her other shoulder) but she never really changes or learns.
I don’t know why I love that about her. In another kind of show, it could be frustrating – that there’s no character growth (though we see she isn’t as shallow as she seems and she does love Saffy), but in a sitcom, it feels welcome.
And I know I’m meant to laugh at Eddy’s over-the-top outfits but, honestly, I would definitely wear some of her ensembles. (Or if I were brave enough, I would).
I’ll always love Patsy and Eddy and I definitely enjoyed the film but, I will say, I do hope it’s their last hurrah.
Originally posted on letterboxd.