Redemption Song Play Book

Well, the song bit is easy, and shall be followed by play (Faustus) and book (Black Flies)

Right; saw “Faustus” at the Royal Exchange Theatre Tuesday last.  Man sells his soul to know more. 24 year lease, it comes due, he drags himself down to Hell.  Beautifully beautifully staged, great acting (especially from Faust himself), costume design, special effects (a beheading – I ask you!).  But, I couldn’t help thinking that

a) the whole was somehow less than the sum of its parts

b) the whole Hell thing was overplayed, especially in an ‘aggressively secular’ country, and the thirst for knowledge underplayed

c) there is probably a Faust staging to be done following the take done by Marshall Berman in his wonderful “All that is Solid Melts into Air” when he takes Goethe’s Faust and runs with it on the ‘technology as the world-shaping Faustian pact’.

Anyway, from kudos to all involved, but it just didn’t quite work for me.

“Black Flies” on the other hand – well, the common thread is of redemption, of a battle for the soul of a man who wants to make an Impact.

It follows a young paramedic in Harlem in the early 1990s as he learns the ropes. (I’ve blogged a brief passage elsewhere.)

I don’t want to make it sound all Manichean/Star Wars, but it comes down to him choosing to either be influenced by the competent and the Good (two men scared deeply by Vietnam) or the lazy, contemptuous and thoroughly Bad.  Oliver Stone should be sent a script treatment, basically.

Anyway, it packs a wallop, and deserves to be more widely read…


About dwighttowers

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One Response to Redemption Song Play Book

  1. Pingback: No good deed left unpunished «

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