I’ve often said during the light-hearted conversation on the subject of eccentricity, “It depends, of course, on ones definition of normal.” Do you have your share of nuts on your family tree?
Christopher Guest pioneered the “mockumentary” on film and his latest comedy Family Tree, which starts tomorrow, promises to be entertaining and filled with eccentric characters.
Just when you think the television mockumentary format may be reaching oversaturation, I have a funny feeling family history researchers will find this one will touch their funny bone.
The show revolves around a sad Tom Chadwick (Chris O’Dowd) who has simultaneously lost his job and his girlfriend. Tom is floundering along life’s “dragway” until he receives an unusual bequest from his Great-Aunt Victoria to research his family history.
Victoria passes along a mysterious box containing a collection of mementos from his family’s complicated history. Instead of seeing it has a box of odds and ends, he decides to see it as the start of a journey to reconstruct the family tree and learn the truth of his family’s checkered past to understand his own.
There are several eccentric characters including Tom’s sister, Bea (Nina Conti) who is a few knives short of a full dinner service. Bea walks around wearing a monkey hand puppet called Monk, an outgrowth of her childhood therapy that has clung to her in adulthood.
There’s a sense within Family Tree that the key to unlocking one’s identity is to take a deep dive into the past, no matter how convoluted or confusing the results may be. Viewers will find it interesting to see how many branches Tom is willing to climb to get his answers and just how many nuts he’ll discover up there.
Click on the video below to see the trailer: