Distinctly odd, sometimes boring, but punctuated by moments of what can only be described as naïve profundity, Mr Phillips did not make me laugh as much as puzzle, in spite of the enthusiastic cover shouts by important literary types.
Mr Phillips is a very dreary man, underlined – or perhaps parodied – by the fact that he is an accountant. Or was. He’s been retrenched and he doesn’t know how to tell his wife. So he goes “to work” spending the day walking through London with a kind of mental erection leading him around. Truly, this man thinks of sex incessantly, stopping sometimes only to make vast, complicated mental computations – as befits, one supposes, boring accountants. These two rambling weeds of inner conversation are interchangably boring and weird.
There is great cinematic appeal in his progress through London’s streets, but there is no climax or resolution. It’s a very strange story. – Karin Schimke
Faber & Faber
REVIEW: Karin Schimke