19 Feb 2019
I don’t even know how to begin without ruining the way the plot unravels.
To say that it’s disturbing would be rather an understanding. Cate Blanchett abd Martin Crimp can chill out quietly in the corner for a while.
It’s a 5-person cast. Stephen Rea, his wife, daughter, doctor (played by and written for a woman), and a stranger.
The women are weeeeeak. I mean, they are probably not bad actresses, but those parts are not big and not a lot of room for development. Sitting in the front row, I expected a broader range is emotion. The doctoress was quite stiff.
The guy who plays the stranger should win some kind of newcomer prize. He speaks super fast and talks a lot of bollox, and he delivered!! Not a single slip-up, and it’s previews.
Stephen Rea knows no equals. Worth and admission price and then some. Especially in the front row. That’s quality acting.
The play is uncomfortable. By the end some people were crying, others were gasping, others still were rolling their eyes and shaking their heads. I did not expect it to go the way it did. So there 🙂
There is a lot in it about stereotypes (racial, cultural). Some of the text is brilliant (e.g., when the doctoress keeps telling him “you can say anything, I won’t judge”, and the next 2 things out of his mouth left the audience somewhere between laughter, shock, and gasping for air”), some of the text is plain dumb (e.g., when he’s talking about his drinking mate and being worried that he’ll fuck him up the arse; sigh; or perhaps I’m turning prudish in my old age).
Thoroughly enjoyed, but not sure I would go again. Although Rea’s acting is great, I think part of it being a great experience is the plot development, which would be lost second time around.
Cheapskate enjoyment value: £15 (maybe with an extra £5 kicker to have a seat where you can see every line in his face).