Review: Shakespeare’s Aliens (online)

Hardly Working Promotions presents this record of a show filmed and edited by Jim Sutton. It was staged and presented at this year’s Orlando Fringe.

Have you ever wondered what Aliens, the classic film, would have been like had it been scripted by William Shakespeare?

No? Well, this mashup is exactly what you never knew you wanted. Delivered with conviction and raising more than one giggle, Shakespeare’s Aliens is a tongue in cheek pastiche of both Bard and space.

Last year, this group made Shakespeare’s Reservoir Dogs. Chuck Dent narrates; Lyn Adams plays Ripley with her adopted Newt (Katherine Riley) struggling to survive the obliteration of the Spaceship Nostromo.

Writer David Strauss makes a hissable Carter, the bad guy plotting to make money, while Rob Del Medico’s Hudson provides the comic relief.

John Reid Adams directs a twelve-strong cast with an eye on the comedy. It made me think of the improv shows I’ve seen based on musicals, Jane Austen, and Doctor Who, but without the audience suggestions.

Shakespeare’s Aliens feels like the greatest hits of both, with soundbites racing along on fast-forward and the broadest of performances. It suits the material and keeps matters fresh.

If you don’t know the movie back to front, you may find yourself lost in this composite of scenes – its greatest hits, if you like. It has the spectacular lighting and spooky sound of the otherword, but the low budget critters and props lack a bit of finesse.

Promoted by the hashtag #ExitPursuedByAXenomorph, Shakespeare’s Aliens is short-term fun: amusing, but not that memorable.

For more on Hardly Working Promotons, go to their website. Their next production, Triple Bypass, is being staged at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this year.