When Brendan Met Trudy

"Good"

When Brendan Met Trudy Review


A cheeky romantic comedy that ardent film buffs will adore, "When Brendan Met Trudy" is an homage-filled confection about polar opposite oddballs in love.

Brendan (Peter McDonald) is a totally square, socially stunted, young Irish schoolteacher who lives vicariously through his movie fanaticism (thus the copycat title). When by chance he meets a charismatic girl who is inexplicably interested in him, the only way he can think to flirt is by quoting obscure French art films -- and expecting her to get the reference.

Trudy (Flora Montgomery), on the other hand, is a hip young thing with gregarious character in spades, but much to Brendan's chagrin, no knowledge of film. On one of the rare occasions when Brendan leaves his flat (to go to church choir practice), they meet in a pub and argue all the way to her bed.

The movie begins with Brendan lying in a Dublin gutter in a rainstorm some months later, after having apparently blown it with Trudy big time. In voice-over, he quotes the opening of "Sunset Boulevard" -- "The poor dope! He always wanted a pool...Let's go back about six months and find the day when it all started." Not being a terribly original bloke, Brendan thinks this is a clever way to launch into his story of falling in love, learning to lighten up and discovering his girlfriend is a cat burglar.

"It's a living," Trudy explains as he gasps disapprovingly. But since by this time she's sat through dozens of art films for him, high-strung Brendan reluctantly agrees to give larceny the old college try when she wants him to tag along. Break-ins, arrests and condescending flack from his stuffed-shirt family follow.

Written by Roddy Doyle ("The Commitments," "The Snapper," "The Van") and directed by film rookie Kieron J. Walsh, "When Brendan Met Trudy" is full of winking cinematic tributes to everything from "The African Queen" to Godard's "Breathless" to Polish director to Dariusz Tomaszewski. But a film degree is not required to thoroughly enjoy the picture. The winningly idiosyncratic chemistry between McDonald and Montgomery is what carries the story.

McDonald's credibility as a pasty dork -- but a strangely magnetic dork -- saturates him to the point that in one scene he even runs after an angry Trudy with his hands stiffly at his sides, as if he had a broom handle shoved...well, you know where. The untraditionally pretty Montgomery's performance as a spunky, funky free spirit is wildly appealing without being so strong she overshadows the timidly neurotic Brendan.

Together their dynamic is similar to Matthew Broderick and Meg Ryan in "Addicted to Love," but this picture has more intelligent comedy and twice as much charm.

Once in a while, "When Brendan Met Trudy" gets a little too adorably quirky for its own good. But only because Doyle and Walsh frontload the film with comical asides, like the deliberately absurd news reports that keep popping up on Trudy's stolen television(s) about gay Orangemen marches and nuns going postal with machine guns.

Sometimes they just misfire, and such faux pas are at worst a minor annoyance and hardly diminish the movie at all.



When Brendan Met Trudy

Facts and Figures

Run time: 95 mins

In Theaters: Friday 9th March 2001

Distributed by: Shooting Gallery

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 61%
Fresh: 38 Rotten: 24

IMDB: 6.8 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Kieron J. Walsh

Starring: Chris McHallem as Male Choristor, as Trudy, as Brendan

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Party Movie Review

The Party Movie Review

Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) is on his way to becoming the new Woody Allen, which...

6 Below Movie Review

6 Below Movie Review

Based on an astonishing true survival story, this film is subtitled "Miracle on the Mountain",...

Mother Movie Review

Mother Movie Review

Darren Aronofsky doesn't make fluffy movies, and has only had one genuine misfire (2014's Noah)....

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

It's been 35 years since Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi classic, which was set in 2019....

On the Road Movie Review

On the Road Movie Review

Wolf Alice fans are likely to be rather disappointed by this hybrid documentary-drama about the...

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Skilfully made by Swedish filmmaker Janus Metz (the award-winning Armadillo), this film is essentially a...

Advertisement
The Glass Castle Movie Review

The Glass Castle Movie Review

There are quite a few terrific moments in this true story, based on the memoir...

Home Again Movie Review

Home Again Movie Review

Reese Witherspoon is so likeable that she can carry even the most hackneyed of romantic...

Brimstone Movie Review

Brimstone Movie Review

An unnerving Western with a sharp female perspective, this film is a series of gruesome...

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Two years ago, Kingsman: The Secret Service seemed to come out of nowhere, ruffling feathers...

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

This biopic about Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne may look like the usual lushly...

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.