Thursday, October 13, 2011

Review of The Count of Monte Cristo at Lifeline Theatre

Once upon a time, I went to a show and it was called The Count of Monte Cristo. It was at Lifeline Theater. The story is about the Count of Monte Cristo that comes to Paris to do some exploring and take his revenge on the four people that ruined his wedding to Mercedes by taking him to jail. It is scary and has lots of stabbing in it. But it is also kind of funny and cool. It is like you are really there because the actors seem so real. The fights were amazingly exciting.

Eugenie was played by Cathlyn Melvin. Eugenie is the girl that is supposed to marry her brother/Benedetto. And Benedetto is not really a prince, but he says he is so Eugenie will marry him. They want his money and he wants their money. I didn't really understand that he was a criminal because they talked so fahn-cy; my mom told me a few seconds ago. Eugenie was a painter and was really smart. She wasn't just pretty; she was also very clever. She figures out that Benedetto is not a Prince and that he just wants her money. She is very good at art, and I think I am kind of like her. I like art and I am good at art. I think she feels that the Count is lying about everything--which he is except for a few times. Eugenie goes off to Italy to paint because they find out that the person she is going to marry is actually a twerp. I think that is better for her, since she doesn't want to get married to anybody. If she had to marry somebody, I think she would marry her friend Albert.

Jesse Manson played Benedetto--the guy who was trying to marry the girl I just talked about. The Count of Monte Cristo saved him from being sent to jail. He was born from his mom when she had had an affair with somebody. When she had the baby, they hadn't gotten married yet, so then she had to marry the banker. The baby was taken away from the mom and buried underground in the yard. And then a gardener or servant or something digs him up, and then he is saved very goodly. That had to be pretty soon after, or he would suffocate. Benedetto is a twerp because he acts so gentlemanlike, like he was an actual prince, but of course he isn't. I have already seen Jesse Manson in another play that was called Watership Down. The other character was funnier and nicer because he was a bird. In this he did a very good job playing a different kind of part, which was very mean and not nice at all. When he got buried you felt sorry for him, but you didn't see him get buried. He acted mean because he had been treated very badly when he was a baby.

Danglar was played by John Ferrick. Danglar was the banker. He was a very snippy, short, chubby person. He made himself look pretty short and chubby in comparison to how he really looks. He just wanted to marry off his daughter to the twerp that I talked about earlier. He cares about money like it is like his wife and daughter. But he doesn't actually care very much about his wife and daughter. He is kind of funny because he is so snippy and cute--it is just hilarious. Like when he was holding hands with his wife, it was so funny because he had such a huge smile and was like "Now you can't take her--too bad." And then, as soon as the Count of Monte Cristo left, the banker and his wife just kept talking. At the end, you feel kind of sorry for him because he has lost his wife, he has lost his daughter, and he has lost his money.

Dana Black played Hermine, and she was the banker's wife. She was killed by her son for no good apparent reason. And when you first see her so bloody, she comes out and you see her, and then Villefort sees her, and then he tried to attend to her, and then her son pops out of nowhere with stripes of blood. She was important to the play because she decides to leave her husband when her daughter leaves because she is actually not in love with her husband; she is in love with Villefort. Villefort gets punished twice; once by being killed, that's one of his punishments, and twice by his love being killed.

Villefort was played Robert Kauzlaric. He was in love with the Banker's wife, and at the beginning of the play he asks the Count of Monte Cristo--"Do you know what Providence is?" I think he asks him that because Providence is the will of God and so, simply, this is what he says, "Do you believe in the will of God?" And then the Count of Monte Cristo says, "Yes." And then he says "The will of God is that you will stay in jail for a long time."

Susaan Jamshidi played Haydee. Haydee was the Count of Monte Cristo's "daughter." She was supposed to be a slave for him when he bought her, but then he kind of adopted her, but with slavery. But she wasn't his slave. In court she comes and shows that she is the Pasha's daughter, and that causes Fernand to be figured out that he caused the killing of the Pasha. I thought she was very beautiful and clever because she figured out that he killed the Pasha. At the beginning, she is walking around with this young man, Albert, and then he gets kidnapped by the guy with the gun who works for the Count of Monte Cristo. Haydee helps the kidnapper by making Albert chase her because of her beauty.

Chris Daley, he plays Albert. He is Mercedes's son. He is going to marry Eugenie but then her father decides to marry her off to some other, "richer," guy. He is important because he is one of the Count of Monte Cristo's friends. He challenges the Count to a duel because the Count of Monte Cristo is trying to destroy his father. Nobody really likes the idea of challenging the Count of Monte Cristo to a duel because he is the main character and you want him to not be killed. Like in all plays you don't want the main character to be killed--except in Richard III and Julius Caesar. Albert, you don't think he's going to be killed because the Count of Monte Cristo has promised that he will not kill Mercedes son.

Jennifer Tyler played Mercedes. Mercedes is the wife of Fernand. She was about to get married to the Count of Monte Cristo--but he wasn't the Count of Monte Cristo then. She always acts kind of miserable because she liked the Count of Monte Cristo better than her other husband, but she also liked her life better with her other husband Fernand when he was a fisherman. You felt sorry for her because her son was going to war; you felt angry at her because she wouldn't marry Edmond. I think when the slave girl says to the Count of Monte Cristo, "We still have to wait." And then he says, "Wait. For what?" That means the "what" is getting married to Mercedes because that is the last thing they need to do. That would make everybody happy because he has always wanted to marry her. I wish people that were still alive in the play got married (except for the banker) because then it would be a really happy ending. Nobody gets married. That just makes it have a sad ending.

Don Bender played Abbe Faria, and he is a hilarious character. Once he had read so many books, and then he talked to the Count of Monte Cristo. And then he pretended to read, but he just knew so much that he was just looking at his hands. He has just memorized it. He keeps turning the page of his hand. It was really funny and hilarious that he did that. He is like a father to the Count of Monte Cristo because he is so nice to him and makes him learn everything that he knows--and that's a lot. When the Abbe Faria dies, I felt really sad. The Count of Monte Cristo screams "Nooooo!" at the same time that another person is dying, the banker's wife, and Villefort screams "Noooo!" at the exact same time as the Count of Monte Cristo. It was really cool. The director made the decision to do that, and I thought that was a great idea for the director to do that. The director was Paul Holmquist. I think he is very good director; he also directed The Moonstone. The Moonstone I also saw, and that was one of my favorite plays.

Fernand was played by James Anthony Zoccoli. He also played the kidnapper. He shot himself in the head after the intermission because he's unhappy that they found out that he let the Pasha be killed and sold the Pasha's daughter for slavery. And then this guy in the audience just right after he shot himself in the head was like "Geez." I was like, you ruined that complete moment. I am just so angry at that person. I think Mercedes and her son actually wanted to leave Fernand behind because they actually weren't very happy with the husband and the father that they had. When he was the kidnapper, I thought he was kind of a nice kidnapper only once because he said he would give him food and water if he would give him money. That's kind of nice because he is not saying you can't have any food or water if I kidnap you.

The Count of Monte Cristo (Christopher Hainsworth) is both a bad guy and a good guy. You understand why he would want revenge, but he does it in a kind of inappropriate way. Sending them to jail would be more appropriate. One of the most expressive scenes in the play was the grape scene. In the grape scene the Count of Monte Cristo would not eat the grapes that Mercedes gave him. It was very confusing because you find out it is an Eastern custom after the intermission. You think he is just being mean and weird. I think it showed that "I do not like your husband." This character is determined, rude, rich, only not nice to the people he wants revenge on, and scary. Hard and fun to play--that's what I think it is. And also Merecedes' character because it is hard to pretend that you are in love with some who wants revenge on other people and one of them is your other husband. I thought the Count of Monte Cristo was going to die, but he didn't, and I was happy about that because I liked the character because I think he is an interesting character.

The writer of the play, Christopher M. Walsh, I think did a very good job writing this play. He read the book, and then he started doing the play. It is so long, it would take you about 2 years to finish that book. But it must have taken 5 years to write the book. He had to make the choices of what to use and what to not use by doing his favorite things in the play from the book and doing the things he thought were interesting in the book. This play makes me want to read the book.

I think this play should be for ages 9 and up, but I am a very brave 7 year old. The play is blood-curdling, awesome, and heartbreaking. People that would like this play would like revenge, love stories, fights, and stage blood. People should see this play. It is awesome.

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