Outstanding ensemble performance but for what? a muddled interpretation that threw in the kitchen sink, sorry maybe that should of been the looted telly, for good measure. Bringing it up to date is not a sin, but why? Are today's audiences so incapable of understanding the metaphor presented by Weiss in the 60's that every anti-capitalist and bourgeois sin has to be hammered home?
08 Nov 11
Actually, everybody seems to have part of the picture. Undoubtedly, one or two moments are overlong and the Buffett, masturbation, mock/ defecation don't shock in the way perhaps they once would. How could they, in the era of Embarrassing Bodies, the Internet and HBO? Outrage is part of daily discourse in the satellite and YouTube era. But the most powerful element of the play is its political and social relevance . Rioting, bankers, pseudo revolutions, the rich feeding off the poor and dispossessed/ forget the Arab Spring, welcome to Britain 2011!! I'd argue it's maybe more Brechtian than Artaud, but actually stronger for that. It's brilliantly acted, powerful and thought- provoking: and EXACTLY the sort of thing the RSC should be doing if it hopes to have any relevance at all. Bravo! Let the faint hearted walk out or stay at home- for the brave this is a piece of total theatre which engages the heart and mind. Brilliant! - Michael Hatfield
28 Oct 11
A certain tedium crept in I'm afraid - everything was overdone - and the spectacle, as brilliant as it was, was a waste of good actors. - Marj
26 Oct 11
Sorry, Mr Toothgritter, but Ian Richardson did play the Herald, then moved on to the role of Marat for Broadway and the film. - T
24 Oct 11
I was so disappointed by this production, all the updating and modern artifice just got in the way of the powerful themes and poetry .I managed to find some films of the original peterbrook production on you tube and realised how bad this updating misfired.....sadly I also saw no advantage or point in being bored by watching the second half. A very big disappointment - Geoff Harrop
22 Oct 11
The cast try their best but the type of shock tactics the director has employed are simply boring and just go on and on. When you have seen an actor shout in the face of one audience member you don't need to see it several more times. Other bits were just prolonged such as the rape scene, after a couple of minutes all I could think about was if they would only just get on with it I could be closer to the interval ice cream!
When we saw this the theatre was pretty empty with people in the upper circle forced to move into other seats lower down so they could shut it off. Still a lot of empty seats in the rest of the theatre!
Goodness knows what the first reviewer on the 21 Oct is going on about - from reading his review he hasn't even seen it and definitely isn't clairvoyant enough to say all performances are excellent. - Gregory
22 Oct 11
Maybe I did it a disservice by leaving before the end of the first act, if it was actually building to a chilling denouement, but the promise of powerful shocking theatre did not seem to be materialising. The intellectual arguments just felt like dated excuses for people behaving badly, and the production wasn't nearly extreme enough to provoke a reaction. Ultimately it was neither engaging nor uncomfortably compelling enough to stay. - James, Warwickshire
22 Oct 11
I thought the acting was brave and committed but the excessive 'realism' of the torture scenes was distasteful rather than disturbing. I also resented being attacked by the characters for an implied 'complicity' in the political stasis of our society. Very sixties but 45 years on when nothing has changed, indeed seems to have become worse, the only way I would have accepted that haranguing would have been from the Circle with grossly overpaid CEO's, disgusting political hypocrites like Tony Blair, and the Bullingdon Boys being made to sit in the Stalls. - Jeannie
22 Oct 11
This was a powerful production, staged with imagination and performed by strongly cohesive ensemble with some outstanding individual roles. Since the basis of your reviewer's two star rating is comparison with the Peter Brook production it can't be taken very seriously if he is not aware that Ian Richardson played the role of Marat and not that of the Herald as he states.
21 Oct 11
The reviewer here gives us absolutely no idea what the play is about, ridiculous writing!!! - Lee
21 Oct 11
A production for our time, and one that will undoubtedly be a 'marmite' show, but one worth seeing.
All performances are excellent. - Greg
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