Archikulture Digest

Reeling

Reeling By Barry Kornhauser

Music by Michael Koerner

Directed by Christopher Niess

Starring Blaine Edwards, Kody Grassett and Nicolette Quintero

Theatre UCF, Orlando FL</strong>

“Where’s the color? Why isn’t there sound?” my frustrated seven year old once demanded upon seeing an “Our Gang” short. Where indeed? Those aspects of ordinary life did not exist in the early days of filming. But what did exist in this benighted era was great physical comedy, and sad faced Buster Keaton was the king. Authors Kornhauser and Koerner look back to Keaton’s genius, and adapt many of his physical gags to the modern stage, complete with a wheezy piano soundtrack to pass along any emoting clues we might miss. Our Hero (Edwards) is in love; he’s about to propose to his Beloved (Quintero). His day begins in an eccentric bedroom where his chairs is his sink, his bed the door, and a small train brings him his mail. When he meets his Ms. Beloved, she puts him off. It’s Hollywood for her, and love can always wait. Our Hero bumps into Big Man (Grassett) and it’s a comedy of errors and sight gags set in a world of bottomless trash cans, all emphasized by an on stage Foley Guy (Austin Davis). Ms. Beloved didn’t get the starring role, but when Our Hero stumbles on stage, he’s mistaken for the director, and soon he’s on his way to stardom, if only for a few minutes.

Act One of this cute show is fast paced and full of clever sight gags and fun interactions. The second act feels much longer; here Keystone Cop chases seem to go on endlessly and the gags feel more forced. Edward’s Hero maintains a cheerful, Red Skelton-like pleasantness; his male counterpart plays a more mustache-twirling sort of comic evilness; it’s the evil born of frustration and ineffective control of his own life rather than any genuine malice. Quintero maintains a heavenly sweetness; she’s made a bad life choice but it’s not irreversible. Fo’i Meleah plays a film diva with great physicality, and if you can arrange to keep the Foley Guy and his sidekick in your line of sight, they provide entertainment above and beyond the main production. Vandy Wood’s flexible set offers the right level of low budget filming atmosphere, and Director Niess does his best to keep a longish second act moving along. Cute, different, and funny in a way we so seldom see; this is a meritorious production that is more mime than conventional acting.

For more information on Theatre UCF visit http://www.theatre.ucf.edu


Recently on Ink 19...

What This Comedian Said Will Shock You

What This Comedian Said Will Shock You

Print Reviews

With his latest book, What This Comedian Said Will Shock You, celebrated stand-up Jedi Bill Maher “shocks” readers by doing the most outrageous, unthinkable, and socially unacceptable thing imaginable: he speaks rationally, logically, and objectively.

Gasoline Lollipops

Gasoline Lollipops

Features

Gasoline Lollipops’ newest single, “Freedom Don’t Come Easy,” is today’s mother lovin’ punk rock folk anthem.

Basket Case

Basket Case

Screen Reviews

Frank Henenlotter’s gory grindhouse classic Basket Case looks as grimy as the streets of Times Square, and that is one of the film’s greatest assets. Arrow Video gives this unlikely candidate a welcome fresh release.

Jimmy Failla

Jimmy Failla

Event Reviews

Despite the Mother’s Day factor, hundreds of fervent, faithful followers still flocked to Orlando’s famed Plaza Live to catch an earlybird set from Jimmy Failla — one of the hottest names on today’s national comedy scene.

Lonnie Walker

Lonnie Walker

Features

Ink 19 readers get an early listen and look at “Cool Sparkling Water,” a new single from Lonnie Walker.

Los Lobos

Los Lobos

Event Reviews

Jeremy Glazier has a bucket list day at a Los Lobos 50th Anniversary show in Davenport, Iowa.

Always… Patsy Cline

Always… Patsy Cline

Archikulture Digest

Carl F. Gauze reviews the not-quite one-woman show, Always… Patsy Cline, based on the true story of Cline’s friendship with Louise Seger, who met the star in l961 and corresponded with Cline until her death.