Some 13 years have passed since David Brent (Ricky Gervais) left Wernham Hogg to become a travelling salesman in the hugely successful BBC show The Office.
In the final episode of the show, it touched upon David becoming a singer, with his attempt to hit the big time included the releasing of a single which didn’t even touch the Top 40.
We next saw David in 2013 when he turned up with a rapper, who he was acting as a mentor for, called Dom (Doc Brown) to perform Equality Street for Comic Relief (we’re sure this event made more than when Brent tried to make money for Comic Relief in the office 2002 episode charity)
Now in 2016 we visit the loved character in David Brent: Life on the Road he is indeed still on the road, working for an office supplies company and still dreams of making it big as a rock star as well as bringing Dom along to rap on his songs.
The opening scenes in the office supplies company will be what fans of the office will adore, as David is the same TV character we loved from the series.
We see him doing awful impressions and telling awful jokes, with a sidekick in Nigel (Tom Bennett) who is a bit of a mash-up of Tim and Gareth from the show, he also has the nasty Finch-like character in Jezza (Andrew Brooke)
David also still loves to mess around with the secretary at the front of the office, this time, called Kaz (Mandeep Dhillon) and we also meet Pauline (Jo Hartley), who David does not notice is his biggest fan.
After cashing in many of his pensions, David has raised enough money for a tour and after working out he has not enough holiday for it, takes the time off unpaid as he really believes in his dream of being a pop star!
After this great start, with some proper cringe-inducing scenes, the film changes to music based style, and we see David desperate to be a star, not for the fame, but to be liked it would appear, and he does this by constantly throwing money at everything.
The band he hires just take advantage and use him for his money, they don’t even let him on the coach with him, of course David says this is because the band want him to focus on his own performance in his car.
The gigs themselves are disasters, adding some fun moments along the way as David has a local radio interview, hires PR and has a photo shoot and gets record agents to see his band.
The trouble here is during the Office TV show you never felt sorry for David Brent, he genuinely seemed happy, whereas in this film you sometimes are not laughing with him but feeling sorry for him, in one scene Brent pays the band £25 each to have a drink with him!
Dan (Tom Basden) as David’s road manager, tries to bring him to reality, advising him he doesn’t have to spend £1000’s on artificial snow when performing his Christmas song, and it is closest to kindness he gets from anyone in the band.
The tour of course is a disaster so no recording contract happens for David, but lessons are learned and the film does end with a positive outlook for him.
This is a good film but sadly never reaches the heights of The Office. It is also a shame that the film makes no mention to those fellow staff.
David could have said I haven’t seen the old crew since Tim and Dawn’s wedding or something, maybe Big Keith could have been the DJ at the Student Union party!but no mention is made, this could of course be because David had a nervous breakdown after leaving Wernham Hogg.
No mention is made, which of course could be because David had a nervous breakdown after leaving Wernham Hogg, which we learn about earlier int he film.
Being barking mad about films, we would like to have heard what happened to Nelson, David’s dog from the final episodes of the show as well!
The songs are enjoyable, the cast are good and the film is entertaining, but it is sad that you never get the same highs the ground breaking Office show did.
I just wished we could have laughed more with David than felt sorry for him at times.
Have you seen the return of David Brent to the screen? Have you a favourite TV show that would you like to see be made into a movie?
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