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Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2007

  One-Man Star Wars Trilogy
Underbelly, Edinburgh

Jo Caird
posted 28 August 2007

At the end of this show Charles Ross, aka Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, Princess Leia, Han Solo, Chewbacca and the rest of the gang, issues a non-apology to his audience: if you didn’t like it, well that’s tough, it’s not like you didn’t know what you were getting into. This is a show for people who know and love Star Wars; anyone who chooses to see it without having seen the films is frankly foolish and will not have a good time.

Ross’s energy is impressive as he races through the trilogy. Not much attention to paid to plot, the assumption being that we all know what happens already. The focus is on the one-liners, the bits from the films that everyone remembers and drunkenly quotes at parties. Most of the show is very funny, Ross choosing his highlights wisely, but often lines are missed because he has garbled them, too eager to get onto the next thing. Ross is a good comic actor and mercilessly picks on Mark Hamill, showing Luke up as a ‘stroppy, whining poof’. Sound effects and music are amazingly accurate. His re-enactments of action sequences show Ross at his most inventive: running, jumping and falling in slow motion.

Out of character Ross is charming, seeming genuinely happy to be performing, but One-Man Star Wars itself shows signs of negligence. Not just Ross’s poor diction, but also some technical errors give an impression of laziness. The show was a sell-out success at last year’s Fringe; this year, in the same venue, there is a sense of complacency in the air that mars the enjoyment of the show. If you love Star Wars for all its absurdities go and see this show. It’s a one-trick pony, but a funny one.


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