6.9/10
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Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa (2013)

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When famous DJ Alan Partridge's radio station is taken over by a new media conglomerate, it sets in motion a chain of events which see Alan having to work with the police to defuse a potentially violent siege.

Director:

Declan Lowney

Writers:

Neil Gibbons (screenplay), Rob Gibbons (screenplay) | 7 more credits »
2 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Colm Meaney ... Pat Farrell
Steve Coogan ... Alan Partridge / Jason Statham / Jason Bourne / Jason Argonaut
Tim Key ... Side Kick Simon
Karl Theobald ... Greg Frampton
Nigel Lindsay ... Jason Tresswell
Felicity Montagu ... Lynn Benfield
Dustin Demri-Burns ... Danny Sinclair
Molly Seymour Molly Seymour ... Danny's Posse
Adam Langstaff Adam Langstaff ... Danny's Posse
Aaron Heffernan Aaron Heffernan ... Danny's Posse
Simon Greenall Simon Greenall ... Michael
Phil Cornwell ... Dave Clifton
Monica Dolan ... Angela Ashbourne
Kieran Hodgson Kieran Hodgson ... Exec
Elizabeth Berrington ... Bettie
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Storyline

Radio DJ Alan Partridge is facing uncertain times with his radio station being taken over by a corporate conglomerate. He makes things worse when he talks down a colleague after a promise to talk him up. The colleague handles things badly and takes the radio station into his own hands, literally, by taking them all hostage. Envisioning all his action heroes in his head, Alan is going to save the day by becoming a go-between for the Scotland Yard. His method though will put himself and others in harm's way because Alan Partridge just can't keep his mouth shut. Written by Anne Campbell

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

12 Hostages - 24 Hours - 1 Partridge See more »

Genres:

Action | Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, brief violence and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official Site

Country:

UK | France

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 February 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Alan Partridge See more »

Filming Locations:

Norwich, Norfolk, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$3,372,132 (United Kingdom), 9 August 2013, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,664, 6 April 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$152,211, 16 May 2014
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Alan Partridge is a known James Bond fan. Colm Meaney appeared in Layer Cake (2004), a film starring current Bond Daniel Craig, and the film that got him the role of Bond. See more »

Goofs

Alan tells us the time is one minute to noon, however the clock reads 11 o'clock. See more »

Quotes

Alan Partridge: We're asking, what is the worst monger? Iron, fish... rumour... or war?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The logo for Alan's radio station, North Norfolk Digital, joins those of the three other production companies in the pre-credits montage. See more »

Connections

Follows I'm Alan Partridge (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Enola Gay
Written by Andrew McCluskey
Performed by Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Too much siege, not enough Alan
27 August 2013 | by HawkensianSee all my reviews

When I first discovered the premise of Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa, which is a siege of the North Norfolk Digital building by a disgruntled former employee, I was concerned that, like many big screen adaptations, Alan Partridge was departing from its humble, unspectacular roots.

By half way into the film, my concerns had unfortunately been confirmed. There are gun shots, fire-extinguishers to the face, explosions, armed policeman; it is by no means an action film, but since when was there such commotion in Alan's life?

It was the desperate loneliness, alienation and banality of Alan's life in the original TV series that made audiences laugh and cringe while pitying and sometimes despising the pathetic central character. When I got home completely deflated after watching Alpha Papa, I reminded myself of just how good Alan could be by watching YouTube clips of the 1997 series.

A single five minute scene of Alan attending a funeral captured the essence of the character. The dialogue is so rich, almost every line provided a laugh and I was cringing at Alan's complete and utter social ineptitude. Throughout the series you learn Alan's behaviour, it doesn't take one long to know when Alan has an agenda; he is so self-centred, immature and incredibly tactless that the viewer can read him like a book. It's both amusing and toe-curlingly embarrassing to see Alan converse with people and deal with his many problems.

All of the subtlety and character study is missing in the film. Alan is no longer a sad-man, a complete liability. He's still cringe-worthy, particularly in scenes where he attempts to court a colleague, but none of the gags even scrape the surface of the programme's brilliance.

The gags are really quite tired. They're predictable and rehashed, particularly scenes that initially appear melodramatic but are then abruptly interrupted by an action or one-liner like a needle scratching across vinyl. There's also a genre-aware armed stand-off scene towards the end where the characters have 'humourous', flippant exchanges despite the immediate danger in an 'In Bruges' fashion, only not funny. More than once I found myself sighing with disappointment and embarrassment at just how off-the-mark and rehashed the comedy was.

Just like the film's premise, Coogan's performance is overblown, he needed to reel himself in. There would be flashes of classic Partridge, but generally both the dialogue and slapstick comedy just died. I commend Coogan's skill for miming perfectly to Roachford's 'Cuddly Toy', however it just wasn't as funny as his air bass performance of Gary Numan's 'Music for Chameleons' in the second series. Also, Alan doesn't look right in the film. His appearance is still demonstrably uncool, however he isn't as awfully square and repellent as he was in the series. If anything, Alan's ageing process seems to be in reverse.

The two principal characters of the programme, Lynn, Alan's devoted and criminally underpaid secretary, and Michael, Alan's good natured friend, seldom appear in the film. These characters were crucial in the series as they revealed many facets of Alan's personality, exposing just how self-absorbed and manipulative he is whilst also showing how utterly dependent he is on their attention.

We have the original team of Coogan and Iannucci, however it lacks almost every element that made the series so funny, eminently quotable and re-watchable. It shares very little in common with its televisual sibling, all Alpha Papa has is a caricature of a caricature and a thin, boring siege plot.

50%

www.hawkensian.com


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