Having witnessed John Otway’s antics since he was shrieking the current pop hits or guzzling ink in our school playground to entertain the bullies, his later transformation into a flop folk oddity seemed perfectly natural.
Before being replaced by Wild Willy Barrett, this writer played bongos with Otway between 1970 and ’77, and witnessed the trouser-dropping and calamitous acrobatics deployed to win over crowds.
Otway’s grand plan to promote himself as rock’s biggest failure is pursued in this fan-financed movie which also calls on old associates and collaborators. It’s a tale hailed as “funnier than Spinal Tap”, but it also establishes how his fanbase was huge enough to send a single into the Top 10 in 2002, though not flush enough to finance a planned world tour by chartered plane. You can only guffaw as Otway careers across the stage of life in increasingly befuddled self-aggrandisement.
If Otway The Movie bombs it would be an ironically unjust finale, but that also seems highly unlikely./o:p