I actually love thrillers that are all “WHAT THE HELLFIRE IS GOING ON” so this was right up my alley- and kept me in suspense right up to the end.
Originally posted on The AU Review.
It’s that old question- How far would you go to get what you want? In Deathtrap we take a glimpse into a play within a play, with real people as characters who commit unthinkable acts that may not have been the acts you thought they were at all. It’s an intensely thrilling stage play crafted to shock.
As we walk into the Darlinghurst Theatre Co’s Eternity Playhouse we are greeted with a small and cozy conversational stage. Set in the late seventies, the furniture includes a desk with a typewriter sitting atop and a small canter trolley of alcohol at opposite ends of the stage. But what is most prominent is the array of weapons hung above the large fireplace. The menacing array of rifles, swords, small guns, double headed axes, bayonets, maces, knives, crossbows… It definitely sets the scene of a thriller.
There is an eerie scratching and the sounds of a vicious storm as the theatre darkens and the play begins… And that is all that I will tell of the plot.
Deathtrap is the longest running thriller on Broadway, and the success of a thriller lies in its ability to shock. It for this purpose that we are asked “for the sake of future audience members- please don’t give away the plot!”. I can assuredly tell you that Deathtrap delivers on its cat & mouse shocks and twists!
And the plot is not all that delivers, for the small cast is brilliant and captivatingly believable. Andrew McFarlane in the role of Sidney Bruhl is so convincing in his characters profession and his subsequent portrayal of his flaws. There is a perfect chemistry between McFarlane and his younger co-star Timothy Dashwood as Clifford Anderson. Dashwood is fascinating, with a wonderful array of expressive features and an ability to depict both revealing and equally reserved emotions.
A refreshing bit of comedic light is brought into the play by the character of Helga Ten Dorp, played by the hilariously wonderful Georgina Symes, who holds her character with all her little quirks and distinctive accent perfectly.
Combining a captivating script, brilliant acting, alarming twists and just the right amounts of intrigue and suspicion, Deathtrap holds its audience in suspense the whole play through. It is a magnificent theatre production just lying in wait for you, ready to shock.