Not Only but Always (2004)

In Amazing, film, hilarious, Recommendation, Review on 03/08/2011 at 5:01 pm

Suppressing the urge to now switch on Caps Lock and just blurt out over the page how I adore Rhys Ifans (in general, as an actor, don’t know the guy, mind) and as Peter Cook (more specifically, after watching this film) is, I can honestly tell you, quite difficult.

That said, it’s a good thing Ifans got a Bafta for this part.

Not Only but Always tells the life story of the late comedy genius Peter Cook. It’s presented as a film biography about Peter Cook and his partner Dudley Moore (Aidan McArdle), but that’s a bit of a lie. Not only does Cook’s personality overshadow Moore’s, but it’s written to tell Cook’s story: his rise and fall, the women he loved, his children, his drinking habit, his death.

Channel4 shouldn’t have bamboozled us about this, indeed. What remains, though, is a magnificent film brimful of comic cleverness about a beautiful, extraordinary, yet terribly tragic figure. Ifans does the hazy look in Cook’s eyes perfectly, as well as his arrogance and rage.


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