Danny Deckchair (2003)

“You’re not normal, Danny.”

In the delightful Australian comedy Danny Deckchair, Danny (Rhys Ifans) is a cement worker who lives for his yearly two weeks holiday. This year, he plans to go camping with his long-time girlfriend real-estate agent, Trudy (Justine Clarke). But Trudy has her ambitious eye on television reporter, smarmy Sandy Upman (Rhys Muldoon), so the holiday is cancelled. Danny is full of imagination, so when Trudy arranges a consolation holiday BBQ, Danny decides to experiment with one of his ideas. He ties helium balloons onto his deckchair, and in front of a house full of guests, he floats away.

Danny lands in a small town where the town’s lonely female traffic officer Glenda Lake (Miranda Otto) takes him in and passes him off as a former professor. Meanwhile, a frenzied media circus is forming around Trudy’s house, and Trudy can’t decide whether to grieve or take advantage of Sandy Upman’s proximity.

Danny Deckchair is a pleasant, light romantic comedy made more amusing by the film’s many bizarre characters. The character of Danny, however, is problematic, and the film’s portrayal of Danny–now the Renaissance man who secretly harboured great wisdom is a bit silly. But this is a light, amusing goodhearted distraction, and enjoyable in spite of its flaws. Danny Deckchair–believe it or not–is based on a true story.

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Filed under Australia, Comedy

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