"It'll leave you in the aisles. Clever and hilarious!"
Movies about, or ridiculing/parodying other movies can often times prove to be a tougher sell than a self-contained comedy, inasmuch as depending on how arcane the movie references are, and depending on how knowledgeable the audience is on such a task, determines how the movie will be received."Scary Movie" is a perfect example of how it can work in terms of being broad as a comedy, yet still focused on the aspect of parody. And although it isn't as funny, "When Brendan Met Trudy" (yes, yes, the title is a gag on "When Harry Met Sally") is quite droll all on its own. An hommage to no specific movie or genre, "When Brendan Met Trudy" is a celebration to and for movie lovers anywhere. Beginning with the goof on the much-imitated narrative technique of "Sunset Blvd.," an Irish movie-loving schoolteacher (Peter McDonald) empty lovelife is teased and pleased when he falls in love with a thief (Flora Montgomery), and the wild canvas/movie pullulates into an exposť of their frenzied happenings. (E.g.: As they stroll down the avenue together, their speech transitions from English into French, followed by English subtitles, and when the English transitions back, there are French and Arabic subtitles at the bottom of the screen; or the follow-up to all of the characters throughout the movie at the very end ("Nobody cares what happens to them..."), etc.) I might have a slight predisposition or soft spot for movies that like to mock the movie industry or movies in general (stretching the gamut from Mel Brooks' "Young Frankenstein"/"Silent Movie" to Albert Brooks' "The Muse"), but they have to be clever and funny to work. "Scary Movie" was a raunchy extreme (its sequel seems to be heading in the already-covered territory of "Young Frankenstein"), but there was concept and a jocular bricolage despite the nastiness and extremity of the humor. Director Kiernon J. Walsh and writer Roddy Doyle did this so well (not perverted humor, but the actual scope of the goofing around contained within), they are lent all the credibility and artistic license they need. Most pasquinades only wish they could collect all the laughter and downright funniness that "When Brendan Met Trudy" easily cajoles out of the audience. (Note: Several people have asked me to the origin of the "pilgrim" nickname, and while they have correctly identified it as John Wayne, I am fairly sure that it was from "The Red River" rather than "The Searchers." Then again, Wayne's movies are not my forte.)
With Marie Mullen, Pauline McLynn, Don Wycherley, Eileen Walsh, Robert O'Neill and Sean O'Flanagan.