Last night a friend and I went to London to see Spamalot; here is my review:
April 8, 2008 by Wulf Forrester-Barker
Spamalot is based on Monty Python and the Holy Grail, the Python team’s gloriously silly romp through legends of Britain in the Dark Ages. The play is not entirely faithful to the film but, to be fair, the film was no more faithful to its sources; if you love one, there is every chance you will love the other too.
The production lives up to its billing as a comedy musical. It has oodles of songs, many mercilessly lampooning the musical genre, such as “The Song That Goes Like This” and “Twice in Every Show”. It misses some of the scenes from the film (for some reason – probably time – the witch hunt that introduced Sir Bedevere) but tackles others in a bold manner, including the giant wooden rabbit.
What impressed me most was the stagecraft. Going to see a West End show is a lot more expensive than staying at home with a DVD but the producers and designers have pulled out all the stops to work their magic and earn their takings. Video projections blended with scenery to produce animated environments. Scene changes merged into each other, carrying the story forward without introducing delay. Potentially difficult sections were mastered with panache (such as the Black Knight battle).
It doesn’t give too much away to say that Arthur and his knights do discover the grail by the end; I don’t think it says too little to proclaim that they deserve it!
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