Penelope Keith & June Brown do a Thelma & Louise
Having returned home from the neighbourhood watch meeting, Margery Heywood (Penelope Keith) and her cleaner, Gladys Gladwell (June Brown), are shocked to discover a teenage burglar. After knocking him to the ground with a vase the unlikely duo go on the run having mistakenly believed they killed him. Things continue to go wrong for Margery and Gladys when they not only end up robbing a chemists and a post office, as well as giving a small time crook a lift, but also find themselves pursued by the police. When Margery discovers that Gladys had an affair with her late husband and their cleaner obsessed son, Graham (Adam Godley), knew, it makes things all the more complicated as the pair end up in Blackpool.
Truthfully, I had strangely high expectations as I sat down to watch "Margery and Gladys" but ended up under whelmed by this British comedy from 2003. For me the story which sees a posh woman and her cleaner mistakenly going on the run and ending up in a sort of comedy of errors crossed with a bit of "Thelma & Louise" just didn't grab me. I don't know what it is as the movie is filled with comedy but for me it doesn't quite come together and in the end "Margery and Gladys" comes across as a movie with lots of ideas and jokes but with a flimsy storyline filling in the gaps.
But what "Margery and Gladys" has is a lot of familiar actors playing humorous characters and the chemistry between them is fun. As such you have Penelope Keith playing it posh, June Brown playing it common, Adam Godley giving us perversely cleaning obsessed as Margery's son and Martin Freeman giving us an over eager detective always jumping to conclusions. I could go on because for fans of British TV there are a lot of familiar faces including Peter Vaughan and Roger Lloyd Pack with them all playing fun characters and having some pretty decent one liners to deliver.
What this all boils down to is that "Margery and Gladys" has its moments and certainly has a wonderful cast lead by Penelope Keith and June Brown. But for me as a whole it ends up hit and miss with a case of lots of funny scenes and performances but a storyline which doesn't quite grab you.