Review: Gregory’s Girl (Rating 4/5)
Following the stage revival of Local Hero, Bill Forsyth’s other classic 80’s movie has been brought to the stage here in a lower budget version.
However, this does not lessen the entertainment value as Captivate Theatre’s production captures the magic of the movie with excellent performances from an ensemble cast backed by a soundtrack of 80s hits.
The decision not to update the story of adolescent love borne on a school football pitch pays off as the charm of the original survives, evoking a bygone era of innocence and optimism.
The cast bring to life all the settings and the action without the aid of props or a set, and cleverly deliver freeze frame and slow motion scenes thanks to some great choreography. The result is a play that will appeal to audiences whether or not they are familiar with the original movie.
Gilded Ballon, Rose Theatre until 25 August (not 19)
Review: Monica – This Play is not about Monica Lewinsky (Rating 3/5)
Some plays are not helped by their titles. If you want to write a play that isn’t about Monica Lewinsky then including her name in the title is not a great idea. If you want to write a play that is sort of about her, then you need to include enough in the script that parallels can be drawn between your lead character and Ms Lewinsky.
This production falls down in both respects and also suffers from being driven more by a theme than a storyline.
It follows a character named Monica through four relationships where each time she is defined by who she is with or what she has done before, rather than her as a person. It has some well-written scenes, most notably with a relationship counsellor that perfectly captures the closing stages of a relationship punctuated with misunderstandings, denial and lack of awareness of each other.
However, the continual time shifts accompanied by detailed choreography to disguise minimal costume and set changes, together with the juxtaposing of scenes from the four stories with no clear narrative link running between them, mean that the play feels disjointed and you never feel like you’re getting to know any of the characters or their stories. As a result it’s hard to really care about any of them.
This is a great shame as there is some excellent acting and some great writing in the play, but it ends up more like edited highlights from a TV series rather than a single episode and story.
Greenside @ Infirmary Street until 17 August