Matinee ***

Matinee is a montage of stereotypes and clichés found in genre films that is created through exaggerated movements and sound effects and performed by a group of fanboys (and one fangirl).  It is a loving tribute to the joys and power of cinema.

It’s hard to categorise this production because it feels more like a hybrid, a cross between physical performance comedy and straight theatre.  With the use of a few projections and an interesting soundtrack, the production goes through four easily recognisable film styles: a superhero’s tale, a crime drama, a kung fu adventure and a slasher/horror.  Everything is over the top and nothing is above ridicule (but always in a loving spirit).

The cast are a pure joy to watch.  Between acting, moving, making shapes and images (some outrageous), the company are always hard at work, finding ways of topping the previous scene.  Everything is fast paced, meaning that if you don’t like what’s happening you just have to wait one minute for something new.  Most of the decisions are inspired, even if very little on show is original.

It certainly helps knowing the genres in order to get all of the jokes, but even those unfamiliar with the references should enjoy the silliness and the obvious affection the company feel towards these film types.

Matinee may not be a wholly original theatrical experience but it is an inspired and thoroughly entertaining one.  Most will probably find some joy in the shenanigans, but film fanatics will probably take extra delight in seeing this affectionate send-up.

Performing at the Pleasance Dome from 12.00-13.10 until August 26.

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