top of page

REVIEW | TARANTINO LIVE - FOX FORCE FIVE & THE TYRANNY OF EVIL MEN { ★★★★★ }


DISCLAIMER: { AD } Gifted tickets in return for an honest and unbiased review.


TW Tarantino Live contains: Racially charged language, staged violence, strong language, use of haze, flashing and strobe lights.



 

credit: Julie Edwards ©

On Thursday the 6th of July I was gifted tickets to review the European debut of Tarantino Live - Fox Force Five and the Tyranny of Evil Men at the Riverside Studios.


The Riverside Studios is a space that centres itself to bring a mix of new and innovative theatre, film, comedy, art, dance, music and television, and where better to bring this cinematic experience alive.


This meta-musical, which presents a compilation of iconic soundtracks from the cinematic universe of Tarantino, brings together the infamous characters like you have never seen them before.



credit: Julie Edwards ©

While I haven't seen a Tarantino film before, this did not stop my enjoyment of the show. I like to see lots of new theatrical styles of theatre and this is one of those experiences that I may never get over.




My initial thoughts, before the show, were quite mixed, due to not seeing a Tarantino film before. I was unsure on how you could create a story from different movies, and how would they bring some very much beloved characters for fans alive on the stage, and how would I understand this show as like I said I haven't seen a Tarantino film. Should I have been worried, no...


Tarantino Live: Fox Force Five & The Tyranny of Evil Men takes over 40 songs from all 9 iconic films, written and directed by Tarantino, then combines them with infamous characters from the Tarantino films.


credit: Julie Edwards ©

The production is directed by Anderson Davis, and choreographed by Sumie Maeda, musical supervision and arrangements by Jesse Vargas.


The show takes on many themes such as, violence (as expected) & female empowerment, in a way that pulls you into the show. With a running time of around 2 hours 15 minutes with an interval, the show gives you something to think about every step of the way whether that is as a critic or just a theatregoer.


Like always, my reviews are 100% honest and I will always justify my ratings, thoughts and feelings, always giving constructive feedback and my opinions are my own.


credit: Julie Edwards ©

The Director, Anderson Davis, has really thought about how to stage, light and create transitions, to give the audience the most immersive and impactful experience. The collaboration of all the creative teams was obvious and important for this type of theatrical experience. The show states it is a 360 degree experience, and it definitely was. Having performers interact with the audience either on or off the stage. During the well known dance scene in the American Diner, the cast 'serving' drinks in the audience, made you feel you were in the diner with the characters. I did think when Mia jumped up as 'The Bride', from Kill Bill, with her samurai sword coming right at me, thought that was it for me, luckily it wasn't. But again a great example of feeling part of the show, even though it made me jump.


All of the direction worked so well due to the style of stage and the old cinema style auditorium. The catwalk-like stage created a cabaret, concert concept, which gave the audience, no matter where you sat, the same view so you didn't miss a thing. There was a benefit of sitting at the table seats in the 'Mr Black' area, again making you feel part of the show, but when the cast performed on the walkway in front of the main tiered 'Mr Blonde' seating, you lost some of the experience as not been able to fully see what was happening. But this didn't make the whole experience any less fun.


A real success was the way the direction and staging executed and supported with the low moody lighting to give you a real cinematic feel from entrance and all the way through the show. Plus the use of the props on stage was phenomenal. One minute a prop was a bar, then it turned into a car, and again the use of lighting on the car really did make you feel that it was heading towards you. The set and props were super adaptable, which the cast did so well whilst still performing, to recreate different locations on the same stage.


credit: Julie Edwards ©

Tarantino Live is adapted by Anderson Davis and Sumie Maeda. The way they have adapted the iconic movies has given theatre a new and original concept concert style show, through dialogue and music. The show is episodic creating mini movies through chapters that are linked together by the core female characters from 'Fox Force Five' and some of the iconic 'Evil Men' from Reservoir Dogs.





A great example of this was Chapter Four "The Stuntman", where our 'female superheroes' took on the Stuntman, played by Mark Isherwood, to get the revenge for all the women he had hurt before. We have seen many films and tv shows creating multi universes, I didn't expect to go and see a theatrical show that could create a 'meta musical' from the 'Tarantino Universe', and Anderson Davis and Sumie Maeda have created a one of a kind production by using chapters which goes in and out of the different 'Tarantino Universes'. Its distinctive style is refreshing and new, could this be the start of a whole new genre of musicals.


The show comes alive in front of your eyes some vinyl classics such as "Stuck in the Middle", "Bang Bang" and "California Dreaming", too many to name as they show uses over 40 of the songs from the Tarantino films. The way the songs were used within the chapters, and brought to life by the outstanding cast members, were so important working alongside the story to keep the audience hooked all the way through.


Normally at this part of my reviews I talk about two or three outstanding performances, but this cast made my life harder because how can I identify just a few performers from a cast of fifteen when they all blew me and the rest of the audience away. I will say there were some memorable performances such as Tara Lee who played Mia and The Bride, her performance of "Bang Bang" felt pure, real and compelling. Tara told her story through the song, but also how she moved on stage through body language and expressions which took her performance to the next level.


credit: Julie Edwards ©

Samara Casteallo stepped into the role of "Jackie Brown" and her fierce attitude on stage was perfect. No one would want to mess with "Jackie / Samara". Samara brought sass to the stage with her amazing vocals and showed us that the "Evil Men" better not mess with her.


George Maguire who played "Vincent" and "Mr Pink", brought the comedic aspect to the show in some classic scenes, such as when he didn't want to be Mr Pink he wanted to be Mr Purple. As an actor musician it was great to see him playing guitar to some iconic songs, whilst still bringing his characters to life, with a twist.


As I said this was an outstanding cast, ensemble and band that came together on stage and delivered stand out performances vocally and through characterisation scene after scene. This wasn't a show just about one actor, this was a show about a full cast coming together to draw the audience in and go home feeling like you had been taken out of our normal universe and dropped into the "Meta Musical of the Tarantino Universe".


credit: Julie Edwards ©

Tarantino Live has taken some iconic movies and songs, with some extreme themes within them, and created an unconventional production which works from start to finish. You don't need to be a Tarantino fan to appreciate this cleverly adapted show that is a cinematic explosion on stage.


My advice if you can is go and see Tarantino Live now....


star rating { ★★★★★ }


credit: Julie Edwards ©

 

IMPORTANT SHOW INFO


TARANTINO LIVE

playing from 6th June – 13th August 2023

RUNNING TIME: 2 hours 15 minutes

PERFORMANCE TIMES: Tuesday through Friday @ 19:30. Saturday @ 15:00 & 20:00, Sunday @ 14:00 & 19:00.

TICKETS: from £29

Age reconnendation - 16+



{ ⬇️ Follow for the latest updates from me and my theatre travels below ⬇️ }









Comments


bottom of page