REVIEW OF ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S “ROPE”

At the Masque Theatre, Muizenberg

Adapted from the Screenplay by Arthur Laurents

Directed by Alastair Duff for MADS

Cast: Richard Higgs, Gary Green, Eve Carr, Wayne Ronne, Lizanne Peters, John McConnell, Barbara Basel, Gavin Werner.

Reviewer: Celia Musikanth

And now for something completely different….a screenplay adapted for the stage ……and it works!

The curtains open on this psychological thriller and the set is revealed. It is beautifully designed by Director Alastair Duff. The setting is an opulent lounge with a magnificent skyline of New York City.

One imagines one is sitting in a cinema and watching the panning of a movie with  the moves cleverly and cinematically planned.

John Blewett’s lighting design is clever and one feels the night life of New York through the use of  subtle effects. Blewett is also responsible for the beautiful composition of the piano music. 

Two friends have committed “the perfect murder” and have invited  the father.  a school friend and teacher of the victim as well as his girl friend to dinner on the same evening of the day of the crime. In addition the aunt of the victim and the housekeeper also make their presences felt.

The tension in the second half is palpable and this is due to tight direction and excellent performances, particular from the male actors.

Richard Higgs as Brandon is sinister and controlling throughout, Gary Green  gives a believably frightened performance and one can’t help feeling sympathy for him, Wayne Ronne as the friend is naturalistic and believably gauche, Lizanne Peters is convincing as the superficial girlfriend, Barbara Basel sincerely plays the airhead aunt with a perchant for movies (titles of which she has forgotten),John McConnell is totally natural as the father, Eve Carr is a ray of sunshine as the busybody loveable housekeeper and Gavin Werner as Rupert is perfect as Brandon with his masterly climatic reasoning.

An interesting and challenging production about the psychology of the right to take the life of someone just to prove one can!

Last four performances Thursday 05 – Saturday 07 December. Book Masque Theatre Bookings on 021 788 1898 or email bookings@masquetheatre.co.za