Star rating: ***
Seven mobsters’ wives meet up for dinner and soon wine and pasta sauce aren’t the only fluids staining the tablecloth. Quentin Tarantino could probably sue, but he based his debut movie on the 1987 Hong Kong thriller City On Fire, so accusations of unoriginality are moot.
Stuchfield’s dialogue isn’t a patch on QT’s but he manages to sketch distinct characters aided by a furiously energetic cast from the Cambridge University Amateur Dramatic Club who are as adept at fast-paced Hawksian overlapping dialogue as they are at yelling obscenities at each other.
If anything, the play can be too fast-paced: revelations can be tossed off without much dramatic weight in the rush to get to the next burst of invective which the actresses tear into with great relish – much as they do with the violence, which is surprisingly inventive and blackly funny.
This may not be a particularly good play but it is a very good pastiche that’s performed with such obvious joie de morte that it’s hard not to be swept along.
Until 29 August. Today 7:55pm.