Stars and Bars
Time Out saysWilliam Boyd's novel may be set in the States, but it isn't a million miles away from the comical crew of Cold Comfort Farm. O'Connor's version is fortunate in its cast. Day Lewis in particular, as silly ass Henderson Dores, a diffident Britisher who relocates in New York, doodles a hilarious bumbler, one of nature's natural de-bagees. Despatched by art auctioneers to acquire a legendary Renoir in an unlikely Georgia Dogpatch household, he is promptly overwhelmed by grotesques. Patriarch Stanton is willing to sell, but his eldest son (Elvis-look-alike Chaykin) has sold it already on the sly, and threatens death. One brother believes himself to be a damaged Vietvet, but is just damaged, and another is a time-warp hippy. A horny fundamentalist preacher is added to the mix, along with a pregnant alcoholic runaway, no phones, no car, and no trousers. No trousers befalls our empty-handed hero again back in New York, placing the proceedings unashamedly in the farce bag. I laughed a lot.