Theatre Review - It’s Headed Straight Towards Us

Samuel West and Rufus Hound [Pamela Raith Photography]

PARK Theatre has never had a problem attracting starry creatives and punching above its weight.

This time the stellar cast includes heavyweights Samuel West and Rufus Hound. It’s Headed Straight Towards Us is written by two kings of comedy, Adrian Edmondson and Niger Planer, co-stars of the cult TV series The Young Ones.

We know we’re in Iceland when we hear Bjork’s distinctive voice before the show starts.

Two actors are stuck in a trailer together. Hugh Delavois (West) plays a butler, while Gary Savage (Hound), once a Hollywood bad boy, is reduced to wearing a rubbery red costume. He’s sexist and a drinker and enjoys winding up Hugh.

The two actors are on a film set next to an active volcano, the glacier is melting, and there’s the threat of an avalanche. Gary is desperate for a drink while Hugh wants some quiet to prepare for his role.

They were at drama school together and old resentments and petty jealousies quickly resurface. Hugh has a bigger part than Gary’s one line and this is reflected by his spacious, well-equipped trailer.

Leela (Nenda Neururer), the 21-year-old runner on the film, tries to keep the peace between the old rivals as well as updating them on the alarming crevasse that has appeared. Will they make it out in time?

There are plenty of running gags about acting and real-life celebrities. It turns out both men have slept with the film’s producer who is Leela’s mother – one of them may be her father.

Director Rachel Kavanaugh ensures the comedy never wavers in this buoyant production but what is missing is dramatic urgency and, despite the charismatic leads, the play feels too insubstantial to leave a lasting impression.

until October 20

Originally published by Islington Tribune