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Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant turn their mockumentary reality-TV cameras to Willow vet Warwick Davis - and the results are pretty damned funny....
HBO / 280 Minutes / 2012 / Unrated / Street Date: January 15, 2013
The saying 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it' is in sharp focus when it comes to Life's Too Short: The Complete First Season. This latest Ricky Gervais/Stephen Merchant series - another mockumentary affair - follows a funhouse version of veteran actor Warwick Davis as he deals with the rigors and travails of what appears to be a post-Hollywood life.
Mr. Davis embraces his Ewok-heavy past, and Willow is cited with alarming regularity here, but most of the time - just as Extras did - Life's Too Short lampoons its reality-TV scope by shoving as many famous people as possible into its storytelling. Liam Neeson, Sting - hell, even Johnny Depp shows up here for a brief moment, and it's clear with these cameos that Davis, Gervais, and Merchant are having a blast doing what they're doing.
Yet as fun as Life's Too Short can be, this familiar territory may be drying up a bit for Gervais and Merchant. I mean, if their next effort looks and sounds a lot like Life's Too Short, it'll still be watchable, but Gervais in particular seems like the sort of comic who might be on the precipice of some truly interesting evolution. If he's reaching the next phase of his career, it'd be a shame to have him continue making the same show over and over. Don't get me wrong - it's a good show! - but he can do more.