Michael Winterbottom’s largely improvised 2010 comedy, The Trip, took British comedians Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon—or semi-fictionalized versions thereof—on a restaurant tour around northern England.
“The Trip to Italy is the Godfather 2 of road movies… as funny as the first go-round, more beautiful to look at, and better conceived.”– John DeFore, Hollywood Reporter
In this witty and incisive follow-up, Winterbottom reunites the pair for a new culinary road trip, with our bantering heroes retracing the steps of the Romantic poets’ grand tour of Italy – eating, drinking and cracking wise all the way. Zipping along in their Mini Cooper convertible, the dynamic duo make their way from Piedmont, in the north of Italy, to Capri, in the south, with detours through the rolling hills of Tuscany, along the Amalfi Coast, and down the Italian Riviera. Punctuating the tours of sun-soaked vineyards and monuments to Byron and Shelley are mouthwatering meals and long boozy lunches in gorgeous gardens overlooking the sparkling sea – idyllic sojourns which give the travelers the golden opportunity to riff on subjects as varied as Batman’s vocal register, the artistic merits of Alanis Morrisette’s “Jagged Little Pill,” and, of course, the virtue of sequels. And what would this road trip through La Dolce Vita be without another hilarious round of competitive Michael Caine impressions? In The Trip to Italy, Winterbottom brilliantly captures the idyllic Italian landscape and the gastronomic treasures being prepared and consumed while keeping the film centered on the crackling chemistry between the two leads, effortlessly melding the biting comic interplay between Coogan and Brydon into quieter moments of self-reflection and insightful ruminations on the nuances of friendship and the juggling of family and career. (Directed by Michael Winterbottom, 2014, 91 mins., Not Rated)