"One-Man Disaster Area"
What You Need To Know:
The ending and some of Mr. Atkinson’s more inspired comic bits make up for some pacing problems in the middle of MR. BEAN’S HOLIDAY. A main drawback is that Mr. Bean steals a couple items in the story, including a bicycle and a motorized bike, and deliberately dumps a plate of uneaten oysters into a woman’s purse. Offsetting the moral lapses in his character is his concern that the boy get back safely with his father. MOVIEGUIDE® gives a caution to MR. BEAN’S HOLIDAY for younger children because Mr. Bean sometimes acts like a naughty, self-absorbed child.
(Ro, B, Pa, C, V, N, MM) Light Romantic worldview with some mixed moral and pagan elements since main character is often self-absorbed and careless of others, so he’s more of a comic foil than a positive role model, plus Anglican vicar holds church raffle with donated prizes; no foul language; some comic violence, such as slapping, tank rolls over bicycle, sudden explosion in village during what turns out to be the shooting of a movie, man jumps off bridge, implied smashing of small wooden building by speeding truck, and some pratfalls; no sex scenes, but woman kisses man’s cheek; people in swimsuits on the beach, but nothing salacious and no sexual nudity; no alcohol; no smoking; and, stealing, carelessness, self-absorption, and man in fancy restaurant dumps uneaten oysters into woman’s open purse.
Rowan Atkinson once again plays the title role in MR. BEAN’S HOLIDAY, a G-rated pastiche of many sight gags centered on the self-absorbed, careless Mr. Bean.
The movie opens with Mr. Bean winning the first prize in a church raffle, a free trip to the beaches at Cannes, France. Mr. Bean excitedly videotapes his every moment. At the railway station in Paris, he convinces a man to tape him at the door of the train. Mr. Bean makes the train but the man does not, and Mr. Bean stands helpless at the closed door, which he can’t figure out how to open. Then, Mr. Bean realizes that the man’s son is left on the train. The man yells to his panicked son to wait for him at the next stop.
At the next station, however, the next train does not stop, so the boy’s father holds up a sign with his cell phone number in the window. Luckily, Mr. Bean has taped the event but he and the boy discover that the father had his fingers over the last two numbers. They decide to go through all the possible combinations, but in the process of doing that, Mr. Bean leaves behind their passports and train tickets.
Mr. Bean and the boy start hitching their way across France to Cannes, but comic disaster stalks them at every turn. A camera at the second train station leads the father and the police to believe that Mr. Bean has kidnapped the boy. Everything comes to a head in a hilarious, joyful sequence at the Cannes Film Festival, where Mr. Bean almost ruins the premiere of a director’s new movie.
The ending and some of Mr. Atkinson’s more inspired comic bits make up for some pacing problems in the middle of MR. BEAN’S HOLIDAY. One of the funniest bits is a pantomime of a tragic opera song performed by Mr. Bean and the boy. A main drawback is that Mr. Bean steals a couple items in the story, including a bicycle and a small motorized bike, and deliberately dumps a plate of uneaten oysters into a woman’s purse. Offsetting these moral lapses in his character is his concern that the boy get back safely with his father.
At the end of the movie, misunderstandings are cleared up and Mr. Bean sings about the joys of France and the French Riviera with the other cast members.
MOVIEGUIDE® gives a caution to MR. BEAN’S HOLIDAY for younger children because Mr. Bean sometimes acts like a naughty child.