The Untrue Story of Monty Python’s Graham Chapman
Coming to DVD this Tuesday from Graham Chapman himself and a few friends along with director Bill Jones, Jeff Simpson, Bill Timlett and Virgil Films comes an amazingly wild ride with A LIAR’S AUTOBIOGRAPHY: The Untrue Story of Monty Python’s Graham Chapman.
This film tells the story of Graham Chapman who actually reads from his book A LAIR’S AUTOBIOGRAPHY, which he recorded years before his death. Told through different styles of animation, Chapman tells the story of his life as he wanted it to be and what he truly was.
From his youth to parents who obviously didn’t understand him (whose parents do?), to his life studying at Cambridge where he meets fellow thespian John Cleese. In college he discovers many things about himself, one is the percentages of his own sexuality.
Realizing his need for more he gives up medicine, travels to New Zealand at the insistence of the Queen (according to his story), and ends up at the BBC where the Monty Python Flying Circus group comes into being.
Eventually Chapman and Cleese run off to Spain to not only burn in the sun but write a script that is being supported by David Frost. During the stay Chapman would meet David and start a life with him.
With his traveling and lifestyle, Chapman falls to drinking and self discovery in such a way I would hope one day to see my own life so vividly.
FINAL WORD: This is a wickedly funny, colorful, mystical, and sharp view of Chapman’s own life. The best part is that viewers get to hear it from the man himself. He speaks openly of his sexuality, his ideas about life, and how all of it was more insane than he when explained by Chapman.
In 1969 when Monty Python was entertaining the BBC with The Flying Circus, Chapman always seemed to play roles that were unpredictable. He also played the lead roles in LIFE OF BRIAN, HOLY GRAIN and YELLOWBEARD.
The documentary also lends to the voices of John Cleese, Philip Bulcock, Carol Cleveland, Terry Gilliam, Margarita Doyle, Andrew Jacquemin, Terry Jones and Michael Palin with a special appearance by Cameron Diaz.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give A LIAR’S AUTOBIOGRAPHY: The Untrue Story of Monty Python’s Graham Chapman three and a half tubs of popcorn out of five.. This truly is a trip to be taken and Chapman is absolutely driving the roller coaster. The ups and downs of his own life take such comedic turns that are absolutely brilliant.
Chapman was diagnosed with cancer in 1988 and after a year of treatment and in September 1989 the cancer became terminal. He passed away October 4, 1989 and along with Chapman a great legacy of comedy and laughter no to be seen again.
John Cleese gives the most appropriate eulogy saying, “he has ceased to be, bereft of life, he rests in peace, he’s kicked the bucket, hopping the twig, bit the dust, snuffed it, breathed his last, and gone to meet the great Head of Light Entertainment in the sky.” But not to spoil the rest, Cleese puts Graham’s passing in its proper perspective, as Chapman would have wanted.
In the end – he tells us his story from the beyond!
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