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

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

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.