Friday, May 16, 2014

Can't Stop Thinking about An Inspector Calls

I had the pleasure of watching An Inspector Calls last night, and my mind is still racing. I normally read the synopsis before I watch any play, but yesterday I arrived late, and by the time I had opened the playbill the lights had already dimmed. I was thrust into a world that I knew nothing about, and I had no idea what to expect. In retrospect, I am actually grateful that I watched the play with absolutely no background; it felt like I was sitting at the dinner table with the rest of the characters, and I was just as surprised with the turn of events as they were. Because of this, I will keep the spoilers to an absolute minimum, and I suggest that you refrain from looking up the plot yourself- after all, it is a mystery story. The first scene opens in a lavish dining room at the wealthy Birling family's home. The characters are all celebrating the engagement of Sheila Birling and Gerald Croft. Everything is going splendidly until a mysterious guest knocks at the door. When Inspector Goole steps into the room, the characters are all under his knowing gaze, and none of them will ever be the same again. Aaaaaand…. that's all I'm going to say about the plot. All the actors in the play are brilliant. When Inspector Goole makes his first appearance, for example, his presence immediately envelopes the room. From my seat, I could see his eyes dart back and forth inspecting the room and everyone in it. Each actor brought a rich personality to their character, and they perfectly revealed more about their character layer by layer like flipping the pages of a murder mystery. I am so tempted to talk about the plot and how brilliant it is, but you'll just have to take my word for it. Know that the plot left me breathless, and had me gasping, sighing, and grasping the air out of frustration. If I have to reveal one more thing about the play, I will say this: the most heroic and likable character is never seen onstage. Some of the other characters may make you want to tear your hair out. From one twist to another, the play was a roller coaster of emotions, and I left wanting more. The takeaway message was enlightening and powerful. That's not to say that it's a heavily serious play; the witty script and actors had the audience laughing from beginning to end. I recommend that everyone should watch this play; stop studying for your midterms and spend an evening with the Birling family. You won't forget it.

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