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Dinner for One
A very old woman wants to have dinner with her friends. As they are all dead, the butler has to play the role of every guest.
Norwegian Christmas tradition - broadcasted on national TV since way, way back - I must have seen this 30 times. I think I laugh out of habit now, but still can't help but admire Freddie Frinton who plays the butler. A truly great performance.
Here it is for you all.
Also known as The 90th Birthday Party, this one-take English comedy sketch is a long-running Christmas or New Year tradition in Nordic countries, Germany and a number of other places, though it's barely known in Britain.
Upper-class lady Miss Sophie is turning 90, but her friends have long since died, so her elderly, limping butler James does impressions of each in turn at her solo dinner party, consuming their shares of the drinks too. The humour is mostly based on the slapstick actions of the increasingly sozzled old serving-man, and actor Freddie Frinton's skill with accents - quite fun if you like these older types of gags.
It's rather repetitive so I can imagine it being more amusing if drunk and well-fed amongst family or friends. Repetition occurs within the sketch, which is about a repetitive annual ritual, and its showing has become a repetitive annual ritual; this circularity also makes me smile.
"Dinner For One", I discovered as being watched as a yearly tradition on New Years Eve in most European countries mainly in Germany. It is a TV short that has since been so popular that it has spawned many different filmed versions and stage plays. The story in its simplicity is one of the most perfect set-ups for a slapstick comedy humor and it honestly could be told through pure visuals alone. Freddie Frinton as the intoxicated by the minute butler is certainly made for the role. While watching this you couldn't help but notice that Frinton and May Warden were kind of going through the motions and that they have performed this same routine numerous of times. But that was not necessarily a flaw as they have really perfected their routine and are completely in tune with one another. This was a very entertaining short that could be watched no matter what time of the year.
No words needed. Classic !
"Same procedure as last year, Miss Sophie?"
"Same procedure as every year, James."
(James and Miss Sophie)
I've first seen this as a young kid probably, and I've seen it at least once every year, on December 31st to be precise, since then, and that's probably true for most households in Germany.
During the last years I've read things like it's what Germans like to think of as typical English humour - but that couldn't be further from the truth, actually.
Who cares? It's still funny after all this years, it's ridiculously quoteable and short enough to enjoy year after year. James impersonating these four dead aristocrates, getting drunker and drunker, tripping over the stuffed tiger again and again... then…
Very simple and admirable,that Butler can act better than Mr.Bean and served better than Bruce Wayne's Butler,Alfred.Ha!
It's very stupid but actually pretty funny, it really gets you after a while.
I think I laugh purely out of habit at this point,but there´s no New Years Eve without Dinner for One.
tror faktisk aldrig jeg har set denne film ædru, men i mit fuldesin er den sgu meget sjov hver gang, så den bliver belønnet med 4 alkoholiske stjerner.
Ein Silvesterabend ohne James und Miss Sophie würde sich einfach nur... falsch anfühlen ❤
No words needed. Classic !
Same procedure as last year.
Same procedure as every year.
There are a couple of movies I keep rewatching once in a while. But there are few movies which make me laugh before the actual joke happens.
Dinner for One is one of them. Great lighthearted slapstick comedy.
Tak for i år!
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