God of Carnage – Yasmina Reza translated by Christopher HamptonPlatform 8 Productions

The Mission Theatre

This is a good production from Platform 8, a rarely produced work but one which resonates with many when questions surrounding parenting is rife. The plot is simply about two sets of parents, one of whose child has hurt the other at a public park, who meet to discuss the matter in a civilized manner. However, as the evening goes on, the parents become increasingly childish, resulting in the evening devolving into chaos.

It is an astute examination of human relationships and interaction and in true Reza fashion it is far more about the individuals than the actual plot line. The script fizzes with great writing slowly breaking down of the apparent “decent” lives the four protagonists lead.

Directed by Mark Hale, the simple room setting provides scope for some good battle formations and the small cast work well together to create tension and discomfort.

Jeremy Fowlds (Alain Reille) spends the evening on his mobile trying to avert a PR disaster with his pharmaceutical company whilst Alexia Jones (Annette Reille) resorts to a few glasses of fine rum. The cracks in the other marriage are equally gaping Chris Constantine (Michel Vallon) alongside Hayley Fenton (Veronique Vallon) demanding justice and apology for their son.

This is a strong show the extended dining table set provides depth but dilutes the oppressive intensity of the room and the warring adults. Performances are well handled and the pace generally good. Well worth a ticket, the sizeable audience last night would indicate a busy run of this thought provoking piece.

Petra Schofield