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Some Like It Hotter (tour – Braintree)

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
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It seems that Some Like It Hot is one of those films which appear new-minted for each fresh generation which sees them. Robin Hurford runs an interesting gloss on the familiar in this new play. All three of the main actors – Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon – being dead, what if they are enabled to offer an after-life experience to newly-deceased fans?

One fan who is presented for this novel variation on Purgatory is Charlie, a meek sort of nobody who had lived with his mother and has (probably) ended his own life. His personal stairway to Heaven (cue an echo of the famous sequence from A Matter of Life and Death) is intricately connected to that of each of the three actors he meets.

All in all, it’s a novel variation on several old themes and one which works well. {Sarah Applewood] gives a good performance – not just a mere impersonation – as Monroe and T J Holmes inhabits Lemmon’s wise-cracking screen persona effectively. I wasn’t so sure about Paul Matania as Curtis; he was inaudible for far too much of the performance which I saw. All three are accomplished musicians, and their jazz numbers deserve their applause.

Charlie in Patrick Bridgman’s characterisation is in many ways the most three-dimensionally realistic person on stage. You feel for him and can understand how a film such as Some Like It Hot has been so much more than an escape from the drudgery of his daily existence. The set and costumes by Jane Linz Roberts work well and Karen Simpson’s direction has the requisite light touch.


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