It's never usually a good sign when a lockdown is imposed on reviews of a movie ahead of its release, so things weren’t looking too good for the ‘Absolutely Fabulous’ movie.
Not even heat magazine - the readership of which is arguably the film’s target audience - got a look in. Heck, even Chris Evans saw it last week and was sworn to secrecy, and we all know how difficult it is for him to keep his mouth shut.
But it seems the PR team’s paranoia was just that, as the embargo has finally been lifted following the film’s premiere in London last night, and Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley’s belated big screen debut as Eddy and Patsy has been given a beautifully manicured thumbs up.
So sod the referendum, sod the rain, and sod the general doom and gloom, all we want right now is an hour and a half of silliness and escapism.
Now if that isn’t a bloody good excuse to crack open the stoli, darling, then we don’t know what is.
Here’s what everyone had to say about ‘Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie’...
Daily Mail ****
"Jokes spring out at you from our crumpled old friends, sharp and fresh and silly and fast and pleasingly tasteless. Twenty-five years on, it’s far better than it has any right to be. The girls have still got it."
"While you can’t imagine the film ever making it to Cannes under anything other than its own steam, the jaunt proves to be a surprisingly worthwhile one."
The Guardian ***
"Basically, Joanna Lumley saves this film: she has an imperishable hauteur and comedy-charisma. She is the garden bridge that stops this film from collapsing into the Thames. You don’t need silly cameos when you’ve got Lumley."
"Saunders and Lumley bring such zest to the film that its clunkier moments are easily overlooked. It certainly makes better use of its armies of celebrities than was managed in Zoolander 2."
"In spite of this drab show of fashionable cameos, the laughs did come and that was primarily down to the one they call Lumley."
Irish Times ***
"What really keeps 'Ab Fab: The Movie' aloft are the two delicious creations at its centre. Chillingly unchanged by the passing years, Joanna Lumley’s Patsy remains literally incomparable. So precise and well-honed is the caricature that it has cornered the market on representations of superannuated glamour."
"Patsy and Eddy's first big-screen outing proves to be a Bollinger-soaked, age-defying, diamond-encrusted triumph - a movie that'll make you laugh so loud and so long you may actually need a facelift."
"Bottom line: it's amply funny, while offering just enough emotional depth without sacrificing Ab Fab's mischievous essence."
"Saunders' script is filled with enough genuine zingers – the best of them delightfully mean – that even a high rate of misfires and an ending nicked from 'Some Like It Hot' can't bog it down completely. This is at its best when it focuses on two women behaving badly, downing Bolly with fags in their hands and drugs in their hair. The laughs come and go, but Edina and Patsy are classics."
"Sometimes bloody good fun is enough. It’s as good a reason as any for making this sunny, silly rallying cry for irresponsibility, and a better one still for watching it."
"An endearing shambles, much like the original show."
'Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie' hits cinemas this Friday (1 July).