Would you go and see a movie starring Clint Eastwood (or maybe Russell Crowe), Catherine Zeta Jones and Chris Tucker with supporting roles played by Anthony Hopkins, Elijah Woods, Sean Connery and Robert De Niro?
A Palpable Hit ProductionDarlinghurst Theatre Thursday, 7 January, 2010 Would you go and see a movie starring Clint Eastwood (or maybe Russell Crowe), Catherine Zeta Jones and Chris Tucker with supporting roles played by Anthony Hopkins, Elijah Woods, Sean Connery and Robert De Niro? Walter Weinerman (Peter Houghton) sure hopes so, as these are the movie stars he’d like to star in his first blockbuster film. First, he just has to pitch it to the big shot Hollywood producers. And that’s what he’s preparing for in this one-man show. Walter is an effervescent, slightly awkward writer with a dream of hitting the big time. According to Sid, a gravelly voiced American producer, he just needs to ensure he’s got all the crucial elements in his production. Those are being bigger than you are, conquering a shortcoming, love and revenge. Once he’s got all that, he’s sure to have a winning script, right? As he goes through the intricate details of his plot, it sure sounds like a box office success. It’s all there: a handsome hero, a historic war, foreign enemies, and of course a sultry love interest thrown in for good measure. He even has a brilliant soundtrack – a sultry Middle-Eastern melody, the twangy notes of Hong Kong street music and a funky jazz beat in Paris – all ably demonstrated using only his voice. Just like the film being pitched to the producers, The Pitch has got the energy of a Hollywood blockbuster. From the moment Houghton jumps on stage, he’s completely committed to each of his characters. He pulls off the sexiness of Catherine Zeta-Jones, the distinct facial ticks of Robert DeNiro and Walter’s own awkwardness with perfect interpretation, leaving the audience with no doubt as to whom he’s impersonating. He even manages to give a startling impression of a saxophonist, sans musical instrument, with hilarious accuracy. The play is a joy to watch from beginning to end. It’s tightly directed by Anne Browning: each segment is obviously well thought out, timed impeccably and is perfectly executed. Houghton wrote and performed this piece and is obviously playing to his strengths. He often leaves us in stitches, sometimes we’re laughing at his uncanny interpretation of Russell Crowe, other times at the sheer lunacy of him running around the stage in his underwear. In the poignant parts, we cringe at his awkwardness and we root for him as he gears up to pitch his film. At the end of this production, there isn’t a person in the room who doesn’t want to see this film hit the big screen. Whether or not he ends up convincing those producers, The Pitch should certainly win over Sydney audiences. Bookings: www.darlinghursttheatre.com or 02 8356 9987 Until 30 January 2010