London SE1 community website

Speed-the-Plow at The Old Vic

Kevin Spacey returns at last to the Old Vic stage with Jeff Goldblum and Laura Michelle Kelly in David Mamet's Speed-the-Plow.

This is Kevin Spacey's first production since he took A Moon for the Misbegotten to Broadway last spring. In Speed-the-Plow he is on stage at once in a typical role requiring huge energy and careful timing.

David Mamet also has a movie career so can write convincingly about the ruthless film industry where this play is set. Spacey is the ambitious film-maker Charlie Fox on the way up.

Jeff Goldblum, who won an Emmy for his appearance in Will and Grace, is the star on stage for the full 90 minutes. He plays the at first confident Bobby Gould, boss of Charlie Fox.

Laura Michelle Kelly, fresh from her film debut in Sweeney Todd, is the temp secretary with more influence than she expected when asked to bring in the coffee. Her role is crucial and perfectly portrayed as the story eventually brings her to the centre of attention.

The play is in three acts and set in Bobby Gould's office and home. It benefits from having no interval despite the need for scene changes which are filled with brief projections.

The office set is organised clutter which allows for much moving of chairs. The office props are important whilst in Gould's minimilist home the action is around a seat which cleverly hints at a bed.

It's good to have Kevin Spacey back home and the three curtain calls were well deserved.

It is still a surprise that the the play, with its urgent contemporary challenges, was written twenty years ago but no surprise that it is also being revived in America this year.

The SE1 website is supported by people like you
Keep up with SE1 news

We have three email newsletters for you to choose from:

We are part of
Independent Community News Network
Email newsletter

For the latest local news and events direct to your inbox every Monday, you need our weekly email newsletter SE1 Direct.

7,000+ locals read it every week. Can you afford to miss out?

Read the latest issue before signing up

Archive
News archive from February 1999 to January 2001
Got a story for us?
Contact us with your tip-offs and story ideas.