Speed the Plow, by renowned playwright, David Mamet, runs through October 22, 2011 at the Gladstone.
For lovers of the written word, here’s the review in print form:
Fuck money and fuck things, but never fuck people. Plosive Production’s Speed the Plow is a play about making movies. Rather, it’s a play about the war between business and art in Hollywood. Bobby Gould has just made the ranks of big time Hollywood movie producer, and before the paint in his office is even dry he’s faced with the choice of greenlighting one of two films. A guaranteed commercial hit brought to him by long time friend and colleague, Charlie Fox, that will mean a lot of money and power for both of them. Or a depressing art house film that would flop and completely ruin his career but is the kind of art that matters.
Written by renowned playwright, David Mamet, and directed by Teri Loretto-Valentik, Speed the Plow is almost an angel and devil on the shoulder story with Charlie Fox, played by Chris Ralph, and Gould’s secretary Karen, played by Kyla Gray, sitting on Bobby Gould’s shoulders. The trick is that sometimes it’s really hard to say which of them is the angel and which is the devil. Should Gould make the movie that will rocket his career or should he make the movie that might save his whoring soul?
John Muggleton, does an excellent job in the shoes of Bobby Gould such that you can really feel for the decision he’s faced with. Kyla Gray is beautiful and totally believable as Gould’s femme fatale. But rounding out the compelling three person cast, it’s Chris Ralph who really shines. He drives home many of the later scenes where Fox feels betrayed by Gould’s actions. And he drives them home hard.
Also, both the costume and the set design –which has already gotten a lot of praise- do a great job reinforcing and supporting the story in a striking and minimalist way. Words can’t do it the same justice as getting out there to see it and the actors playing in it, for yourself.
And you still can. Speed the Plow plays at the Gladstone through October 22 giving you this weekend and next week to get down there.
Photo provided by Plosive Productions.
Video production courtesy of Valley Wind Productions, produced by Allan Mackey.
*Disclosure: Matthew Champ, our usual reviewer, was unable to attend this play. Speed the Plow was reviewed by Allan Mackey who left the on camera delivery to the professional.