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Comfort and Joy
     

Comfort and Joy

Director: Bill Forsyth

Cast: Bill Paterson, Eleanor David, Clare Grogan

 
Writer/director Bill Forsyth's follow-up to his best film, Local Hero, is another comic exploration of a man undergoing a personal crisis. In Local Hero, the American played by Peter Riegert finds himself enchanted by the people and ambience of a Scottish village he has been dispatched to purchase for an oil company. In Comfort and Joy, Alan (Bill

Overview

Writer/director Bill Forsyth's follow-up to his best film, Local Hero, is another comic exploration of a man undergoing a personal crisis. In Local Hero, the American played by Peter Riegert finds himself enchanted by the people and ambience of a Scottish village he has been dispatched to purchase for an oil company. In Comfort and Joy, Alan (Bill Paterson) is a Glasgow radio disc jockey whose air name is the chirpy Dickey Bird. After Maddy, his girlfriend (Eleanor David), walks out on him at Christmas, he's spurred to re-evaluate his life. Looking for more meaningful work than spinning pop tunes and offering inane chatter to his geriatric listeners, Alan decides to make a radio documentary. He chances upon a local rivalry between two ice cream companies, who are sabotaging each other's trucks in an effort to monopolize the market. Attracted to Charlotte (C.P. Grogan), the daughter of one of the company owners, Alan finds himself playing peacemaker rather than documentarian. That this cold war takes place in the dead of a bitter Scottish winter is only one of Forsyth's many sly touches.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Tom Wiener
Even if it's not up to the sublime heights of Local Hero, Comfort and Joy is still a strong entry in writer/director Bill Forsyth's modest filmography. Character actor Bill Paterson is perfect as the likable but ineffectual Alan; you can see why a woman like his girlfriend (Eleanor David), who is first seen shoplifting her way through a department store at Christmas, would grow tired of his plodding ways. Nonetheless, when Alan begins casting about for work that will bring more meaning to his life, you find yourself pulling for him. Forsyth then begins introducing a gallery of off-center characters, most of them connected to the ice cream war Alan stumbles into, and Alan is forced to see beyond his own petty problems to take into account a seemingly petty but truly serious business rivalry. The film never overplays its hand at presenting, as in Local Hero, an insular community of lovably preoccupied folks. Few directors -- Jonathan Demme in Citizens Band and Melvin and Howard and Jean-Pierre Jeunet in Amelie -- can match Forsyth with that kind of achievement.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/10/1998
UPC:
0096898014632
Original Release:
1984
Rating:
PG
Source:
Universal Studios

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Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Bill Paterson Alan
Eleanor David Maddy
Clare Grogan Charlotte
Alex Norton Trevor
Patrick Malahide Colin
Rikki Fulton Hilary
Roberto Bernardi Mr. McCool
Peter Rossi Paulo
Alan Stuart Fight Arranger
Billy Greenlees Trevor's Workman
George Rossi Bruno
Billy McElhaney Renato
Gilly Gilchrist Rufus
Caroline Guthrie Gloria
Ona McCracken Nancy
Elizabeth Sinclair Fiona
Katy Black Sarah
Robin Black Lily
Ron Donachie George
Arnold Brown Psychiatrist
Iain McColl Archie
Douglas Sannachan Trevor's Workman
Robert Buchanan Trevor's Workman
Alan Tall Trevor's Workman
David Patrick O'Hara Engineer
Alistair Campbell Keith
Charles Kearney All-Night Deejay
Teri Lally Shop Assistant
Ray Jeffries Removal Man
Johnny Irving Bob Hope Look-Alike

Technical Credits
Bill Forsyth Director,Screenwriter
Roy Alon Stunts
Adrienne Atkinson Production Designer
Davina Belling Producer
Yvonne Coppard Makeup
Michael Ellis Editor
Susie Figgis Casting
Andy Harris Art Director,Production Designer
Lindy Hemming Costumes/Costume Designer
Paddy Higson Associate Producer
Mark Knopfler Score Composer
Louis Kramer Sound/Sound Designer
Ian Madden Asst. Director
Chris Menges Cinematographer
Clive Parsons Producer
Mary-Jane Reyner Costumes/Costume Designer

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