I had another chance to see Monty Python And The Holy Grail recently when it was shown as part of a Python evening on BBC.
The evening began with a documentary looking at the career of the Python team which was fairly interesting but the documentary that followed really appealed to my obsessive geek nature.
It featured Michael Palin going back to some of the streets and houses where they filmed some of their most famous sketches. He then goes on to give the present occupiers plaques to hang on their walls with enscriptions like:
"Gas Cooker Sketch Filmed Here".
Apparently, there’s even a japanese guidebook to the Monty Python locations of London.
Anyway, the BBC’s Python evening continued with The Holy Grail and finished up with one of my favourite films of all time: Brazil.
I know it’s not a Monty Python film but the Terry Gilliam connection is good enough for the BBC so it’s good enough for me.
What a great film! It seemed a shame to watch it on the small screen.
I was struck by just how dystopian the film’s vision is. It’s partly acheived by making everything so inconvenient. As well as all the Kafkaesque paperwork, all the gadgets, vehicles and everyday devices are just clumsy and difficult to use - the antithesis of everything good in industrial design.
I earned some extra geek karma points by spotting a walk-on role in the third scene of the film. I recognised the actor’s face and voice but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. Then it hit me: it was the guy who played Arthur Dent in The Hitch-hiker’s Guide To The Galaxy.
LEGO, Monty Python, Terry Gilliam, Douglas Adams… it’s all connected.