Monday, December 9, 2019

A Drinking Game-Minnesota at Phoenix Theater

OK, I can admit that I’ve seen Home Alone one or two many times. So when I got a notification on Facebook of the upcoming Drinking Game-Minnesota with Macaulay Culkin’s face smiling back at me, how could I resist? This show is produced by Shadow Horse Theatre LLC, and executive produced by Matt Saxe.  It played at Phoenix Theater on Saturday Dec. 7th.

In a refreshing take on a movie that pokes fun at overt white privilege, The Drinking Game combines Christmas music, The Home Alone script and narration to make an undeniably funny evening. Matt Saxe is the narrator who reminds everyone of the rules. One must drink after hearing actors say: family, home, Christmas, alone and any time Kevin screams! Actors must drink after seeing their character’ name appear in the script.

Throughout the evening, actors read many roles so they're forced to drink in a sequence. You can imagine how hard it is to keep track of lines when alcohol is consumed, so when eight-year-old Kevin fumbles on a line, it’s too funny to hear the narrator exclaim, “It’s kicking in!”
It’s even more hilarious to hear the audience repeat lines they are familiar with: Kevin, you are completely helpless.  Kevin, I’m going to feed you to my tarantula. Or Kevin, you are what the french call les incompétents. 

In any of the  tableaux where drama and high stakes are involved, characters are out of their seats reenacting scenes. An example of this is when Kevin (Natalie Rae Wass) slams into Buzz, causing a drink to spill on the families’ passports and tickets, or when the family oversleeps and the ‘Holiday Flight’ song plays as members rush about, packing their things. Characters even jog in place with their tongues hanging out-on the way to the terminal.

Stakes are higher in torture sequences involving the burglars. The two bad guys suffer accidental falls, have their hair set on fire with a blow torch--orange streamers act as a fire--and are shot by Kevin with a toy gun. Matt Saxe reminds everyone that the show is low budget. It makes sense when slips are made while actors carry the script in one hand, and a beer in the other. An actor breaks the fourth wall, a conceptual barrier, by saying “Marv you go stage left.” and Kevin yells back “Are you guys thirsty for more?”
Kevin has great energy in his actions,as he runs around the theater when Old Man Marley (Jim Ahrens) walks onto the scene with a cart and a plastic shovel.

If you are looking for some great late night fun, and (I’m talking late, the shows usually starts at 10:30! )Then come and see a movie script reenactment and remind yourself of what it was you liked about a film the first time you saw it. The Drinking Game is recommended for an audience 21 or older, especially if you plan to drink. You’ll have ample opportunities to see any of the Drinking Games, as they show monthly.

Next show is Dumb and Dumber Sat. January 4th, 2020

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