Slowly losing my Faith Machine
As any writer knows, endings are notoriously difficult. At the first interval (there are two) in Alexi Kaye Campbell's new play at the Royal Court, Faith Machine, I tweeted that I was very much enjoying the play but was interested to see where it was going.
The problem is that after 2 hours and 50 minutes it didn't really go anywhere, it just sort of fizzled out in a cheesy cul de sac. Which is a shame because I really enjoyed most of the journey along the way.
Campbell is a fine writer. His observations are spot on, he is witty and he is clever but this examination of faith versus capitalism feels like a broad brush doesn't really challenge or surprise as it should.
It's set in New York, Greece and London and centres on Sophie (Hayley Atwell) who leaves her American boyfriend Tom (Kyle Soller) because he is taking a job with a pharmaceutical company who's record on ethics is dubious. Her father Edward (Ian McDiarmid) is a Church of England Bishop losing his faith in the church because of its attitude towards gays. He's retiring in the family's holiday home on a small Greek Island with his house keeper, a former Ukrainian prostitute Tatyana (Bronagh Gallagher).
In the first scene we see Sophie and Tom breaking up and the play subsequently jumps back and forth to the years pre and post the split.
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