Billy Connolly's World Tour Of England, Ireland And Wales [DVD] starring: Billy Connolly

Billy Connolly's World Tour Of England, Ireland And Wales [DVD]

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Publisher: Universal Pictures UK
Release date:
Media: DVD
Number of discs: 2

Format

  • PAL
  • Colour

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Editorial Review

Billy Connolly's travel programmes have some difficulty deciding if they are records of his stand-up tours or travelogues interrupted by the occasional comedy routine. Fortunately in his World Tour of England, Ireland and Wales the two elements complement one another more often than they distract from each other. This series, which sees Connolly traversing the respective countries on his trademark motorised tricycle, is agreeable if ultimately insubstantial viewing.

That Connolly is an engaging presenter is no surprise: he has, after all, constructed a successful career from an ability to get large numbers of strangers to like him. However, probably due to the here-today-gone-tomorrow logistics of touring, his insights into the places he visits tend to be fleeting and predictable: in Dublin he plays the banjo in a pub, in Belfast he visits the shipyards and the more picturesque Republican and Loyalist neighbourhoods, in London he climbs the tower at Westminster Palace that houses Big Ben, and so on. Nobody who watches this, especially, if they have any first-hand knowledge of the cities, is going to learn anything they didn't already know.

As if in acknowledgement of the lack of narrative weight, there are an awful lot of lingering aerial shots of the locations. But with less money spent on helicopter hire, and more time to get to grips with the locations and, more crucially, the people who live in them, Connolly could do much better than this.

On the DVD:: Billy Connolly's World Tour on disc has a clever and witty interactive menu map of the countries visited that also offers an assortment of random trivia relating to each location. The special features are a link to Connolly's official Web site, and a chance to hear some of the music from the series in isolation. --Andrew Mueller

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