Review: Hitchcock Blonde provides thrills in saga of sex and obsession
Ian Midgley reviews Hitchcock Blonde at Hull Truck, runs until Saturday, February 16
A story of sex, obsession and unrequited lust is how Hitchcock Blonde is being sold. And that is pretty much what it delivers, all packaged within an ingenious folding drama within a mystery within a thriller.
Starting out with an awkward relationship between an ageing college lecturer lothario and his attractive young student – and object of his desires – Terry Johnson’s clever three-pronged storyline intertwines past and present when the couple, decamped to a holiday villa, discover film of a lost Hitchcock masterpiece, which could reveal more than they expected about the enigmatic great director and the root of his famous fascination for blonde starlets in peril.
Excellent performances all round from the cast – most notably Alex Delamare who provides a wonderfully eccentric Alfred Hitchcock to remember -make for a cleverly-plotted study of tortured love.
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Nigel Hastings is fascinating and endearing as Alex, the pompous lecturer desperate to recapture some youthful passion in the arms of a younger woman, while both Augustina Seymour, as his protégé Nicola, and Rosalie Craig, as the eponymous blonde seeking stardom, offer touching and believable performances that help to ramp up the (sexual) tension.
Add to this some clever stage design, some Hitchcockian movie tricks and the world’s smallest swimming pool and you have all the ingredients of an intriguing, and at times disconcerting, whodunit.
Featuring far more nudity than Hitch himself ever got away with in the famous Psycho shower scene, it’s not for the prudish or easily scandalised – but the play is a tense, thought- provoking and titillating piece that will leave you on the edge of your seat, wondering how it will resolve itself – and which of its cast will survive.
And I guarantee you’ll never look at Dover Sole in the same way again.
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