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EdFringe 2018 Review: Kill the Beast: The Director's Cut

Kill the Beast: The Director's Cut 
★★★★
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The fourth production from the Kill the Beast comedy team is The Director's Cut, a send-up of classic British horror cinema and the challenges of the egotistical thespian. The result is a raucously enjoyable farce filled with majestic comic performances and unabashed silliness.

"Difficult" 1950s film musical star Vivien Smith is working on a low-budget horror film in the 1970s when she is hit by a bus. The crew draft in the incredibly-similar looking Ronnie to film, Vivien's final scenes, but an eerie presence on set, as well as crew of difficult acTORs make completion quite the challenge.

Taking place on a wobbling set of an old drawing room evocative of low-budget horror fare, The Director's Cut plays with the camp trappings of the genre and exploits them for full comic potential. Crafting a real air of unprofessionalism and chaos on the set, the Clem Garritty directed piece plays with the high camp lack of continuity often found in the genre from integral props being inexplicably cut, scenes changing at the drop of a hat, to character's hands being switched for lizard hands when a hand-double is injured. The result is evocative of campy horror tales like Murders in the Rue Morgue and The Beast Must Die.

The Director's Cut also plays with changing trends in cinema, opening with a musical number from Vivien Smith and serving another at the show's 'interval' (an amusing number called The Bad Cats) and a high-octane disco number to bring the show to a close. This mashing of genres makes for a fun and raucous atmosphere sure to bring a smile to your face.

Yet the real pleasure of the show comes from the close-knit group of actors bouncing off one another. Small gags are built on to the point of hilarity, with the actors continually finding new ways of heightening the humour - for example a simple line reading of "These fists are ready" becomes a laugh-out-loud running gag as the silliness escalates. Character's secrets from one another spiral and tangle into further comic gems whilst the overacting heightens into an amusing, dramatic final crescendo.
Theatre Review 6223104204048850790
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