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Comfort and Joy (1984)

 -  Comedy  -  10 October 1984 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 975 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 14 critic

Radio host Alan Bird witnesses how an ice cream van is attacked and destroyed by an angry competitor. This leads him into the struggle between two Italian families, the Bernardis and the ... See full summary »

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Title: Comfort and Joy (1984)

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Alan
Eleanor David ...
Maddy
...
Charlotte (as C.P.Grogan)
...
Trevor
...
Colin
Rikki Fulton ...
Hilary
Roberto Bernardi ...
Mr. McCool
...
Bruno
Peter Rossi ...
Paolo
Billy McElhaney ...
Renato
Gilly Gilchrist ...
Rufus
Caroline Guthrie ...
Gloria
Ona McCracken ...
Nancy
Elizabeth Sinclair ...
Fiona
Katy Black ...
Sarah
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Storyline

Radio host Alan Bird witnesses how an ice cream van is attacked and destroyed by an angry competitor. This leads him into the struggle between two Italian families, the Bernardis and the Rossis, over whose ice cream vans can sell where in Glasgow. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Have you ever had one of those weeks... See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

10 October 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Conforto E Prazer  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There was a real Ice Cream war in Glasgow in 1984, and it lead to murders within the City of Glasgow. It was suspected that it was really a drug-land turf war by ice cream vendors who used their ice cream vans as a front. See more »

Crazy Credits

During the end credits, Alan 'Dickie' Bird (Bill Paterson) is heard taping and screwing up a radio commercial. See more »

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User Reviews

Male & Female unarmed combat: Global Warming meets the Ice Queen
12 June 2005 | by (Kent England) – See all my reviews

Brian Leonard from Williamsport, PA says "This film's main plot ingredient is ice cream...but until it gets there (10 - 20 minutes in), it's surprisingly bland for a Bill Forsyth movie." Not Forsyth's best, but still a charmer, 5 January 1999 8/10 I couldn't disagree more. The most interesting dialogue by far is the female/male "dialogue" when the main character Alan "Dicky" Bird's "bird" is flying from their little nest.

He had imagined that Maddy, this gorgeous "femme fatale" character who had temporarily alighted and attached herself upon his life was somehow a "permanent" fixture but this had been pure illusion on his part.

When the alighted bird had grown bored with his little nest she flew, first mentally and in an unforgettable scene, she upped and left physically, as precipitously, no doubt, as she had arrived.

Such is the way with many a woman of today, even more likely a behaviour if she has beauty.

The male character is disorientated by this sudden event and at first responds as if he cannot really believe it is happening. When it dawns on him that this "bad dream" really is for real he then gets into a "Why?" and then is dragged into a "what is whose", then on into the downward spiral the full wonderful inversion on just who is behaving badly.

Needless to say that, irrespective of actual behaviour, the "culprit" just has to be the male: verbally the male comes off not just worse but, as usual, worsted.

No matter how outrageously a woman behaves she is quite capable of a neat verbal inversion and in this case the Maddy character plays a blinder with some classic and deftly delivered put downs.

Playing the hurt and victimised party who is able to sync and think herself into responding into the role of the one who has been hard done by and is merely responding, in a perfectly natural defensive manner, to untoward male behaviour.

Thus a precipitous dumping of her partner is seen by her as something that was his fault: he hadn't the emotional intelligence to see what she was going through so somehow he is to blame.

She is only saving herself and not acting in a selfish and narcissistic manner; of course not; she's a woman.

A trip down to the delicatessen of male/female battle lines, those (mostly) unarmed combats, those misunderstandings of the parallel universe which male and female find themselves in each knowing they are right.

The Maddy leaving scene is a classic little vignette of the warfare-welfare nuclear reaction that out of control damaging "free radical" behaviour can have on our nervous system, the males especially.

Personally I don't think the woman finds much happiness in this ultimately destructive "free radical" approach to life either, atomistic egoism is never much of match for complementary synchronizing and symbiosis……well if you can find it.

This is the equivalent to the search for the "Holy Grail" these days perhaps, well in terms of finding and keeping anyway. It's more easily lost than found due to the antagonism that overrides and eventually buries, in many cases, the synchronizing that relationships are meant to provide each partner.


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