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6 Degrees Entertainment

'Albert's Memorial'
(David Jason, David Warner, Judith Hoersch, Michael Jayston, et al / DVD / NR / (2009) 2010 / BFS Entertainment)

Overview: Harry (David Jason, 'A Touch of Frost') and Frank (David Warner, 'Titanic') promise to honor their friend Albert's dying wish to be buried on the hill in Germany where the three fought side-by-side in World War II. Feeling too old for adventure, but determined to keep their word, they set off across Europe in Harry's black cab on a journey full of surprises.

DVD Verdict: What a lovely, wonderful story this was. Sure it's way too brief at just 68 minutes, but the cinematography, the expert camera work along the way, and the story line itself is just so great to behold and settle into a cozy chair to watch unfold.

We begin the story watching flashbacks to three soldiers in the war, showing them to be who they are today. David Jason, as we progress, shows none of his Frost or Del Boy quirks here, which is good, and we soon forget about those characters and believe in this older one. David Warner hasn't been around on US screens for a while, and as this film was made for ITV Television in Britain in 2009 - and is seeing its first release in the US on this DVD - it seems most likely his US cinematic days are done.

Shame though as he puts in a stellar role alongside that of Jason. When the two men are 'liberating' the corpse of their friend, Michael Jayston, Jason whispers, "He's in here." To which Warner replies, "Why are you whispering? He's dead, not resting!"

Once in Germany they, for no apparent reason save for she might be able to help them read the maps, pick up a young, blonde German hitch-hiker called Vicki, who they continue on their adventure with. 'Albert's Memorial' may be about a task that 70-year olds should never have undertaken, but felt they should do is definitely a "black comedy" for sure, but comes complete with some serious, thought-provoking moments too.

Revolving around the "last wish" of one of a trio of World War II soldiers to be buried in Germany on the hill where the three were stationed in Hindenburg, the reasoning of such a request is revealed in more ongoing flashbacks. Concentrating on the two experienced British actors playing senior citizens coping in a younger world, their young female companion aiding in the driving and the listening along the way, their collective trials and tribulations in getting the embalmed corpse of their friend to his final resting place is truly brilliant to watch unfold.

How they finally come across the EXACT spot where it all happened, and the actual spiritual finale of an ending is NOTHING you can see coming - I promise you! This is a film for all ages and I recommend it highly. [RT]

This is a Full-Screen Presentation (1.66:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.