A British audience’s enjoyment of ‘Get Him to the Greek’ will depend entirely on their Brand tolerance: those already sick of his incessant self-love and florid Victorian dandyisms should steer clear. Although Jonah Hill as the long-suffering record exec tasked with delivering Russell’s rock legend to the titular LA theatre may be the putative frontman, this is Brand’s movie all the way: he’s the one snorting the drugs, throwing the tantrums and getting the lion’s share of the laughs.
And the laughs are big: coupling the preening Britrock clichés of ‘Spinal Tap’ with the edgy darkness of yuppie nightmare movies like Scorsese’s ‘After Hours’, the film has a manic, propulsive intensity that culminates in a series of excessive and hilarious comic setpieces. That it also has a big soft heart will come as no surprise to followers of the modern American man-com, though ‘Get Him to the Greek’ delivers a surprisingly raw, thoughtful and gender-sensitive take on the obligatory ‘aw-shucks’ ending. For now, Russell’s rep seems secure.