Monty Python’s Last Hurrah is Flawless (mostly)


By: Addison Wylie

Legendary British comedy masterminds Monty Python gathered at London’s O2 arena and performed their last show of Monty Python Live (mostly) on Sunday, July 20.  There were plenty of animal puns, ridiculous cheekiness, and spam to go around.

Monty Python Live (mostly) opens with a silly song about llamas and leads in with John Cleese, Michael Palin, Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones, and show director Eric Idle performing a sketch about reuniting and oneupmanship regarding horribly ludicrous upbringings.  It was a hilarious mixture of wit and sprawling absurdism.

The show carried on with reenactments of classic bits such as “The Lumberjack Song” and “Every Sperm is Sacred”.  Although it was a thrill to revisit these engraved skits, it was interesting to see how theatrics and a chorus line can sometimes make things….too goofy.  I appreciated the tongue-in-cheek choreography and staging, but it really pushed its own limits of exaggeration – I didn’t know that was possible for these Brits.

The show is intercut with clips from their television show – which are always good for a laugh – and the show caps things off with heartfelt cameos and a perfect reiteration of the Dead Parrot sketch.  Palin and Cleese can barely contain themselves, and we can’t either.

Monty Python fans who will be catching encore presentations across the globe in movie theatres will be happy to know the transmission never cuts out, and the lengthy show flows extremely well.  However, the recording of the event has been helmed and cut in-camera by a team who don’t seem very committed to this event.  The occasional irrelevant close-up will occur when things are going on elsewhere on the stage, which is a bit bothersome when a large dance number is going on and we’re only focused on select dancers.

This last hurrah is essential viewing for anyone who has been influenced or amused by Monty Python’s oddball sense of humour and satire.  Grab your empty coconuts, and gallop your way to a participating venue.

Catch encore presentations of Monty Python Live (mostly) on July 23 and 31 at participating Cineplex theatres. You can also catch screenings of  Meaning of Life (July 24), Monty Python’s Life of Brian (July 27), and Monty Python and the Holy Grail (July 30).

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