Video: Trailer for #AlmeidaGreeks season and Ben Whishaw is looking dangerous
Review: Robert Holman's Breakfast of Eels, Print Room at the Coronet

Review: Silliness and satire in Three Lions at St James Theatre

The Three Lions by William Gaminara. Tom Davey (Prince William), Séan Browne (David Beckham), Dugald Brucelockart (David Cameron)  Credit Geraint Lewis (8)
Three Lions: Tom Davey, Séan Browne and Dugald Bruce-Lockhart as Prince William, David Beckham and David Cameron. Photo by Geraint Lewis

It 2012, the day before FIFA announces which cities have successfully bid to host the 2018 and 2022 World Cup. David Cameron (Dugald Bruce-Lockhart), David Beckham (Séan Browne) and Prince William (Tom Davey) are gathered in a hotel room planning final tactics to win the tournament for the UK.

It is a meeting of three influential yet very different men and, with the rest of the delegation stuck on a delayed flight, they have only the assistance of Cameron's new intern Penny (Antonia Kinlay) and over enthusiastic hotel steward Ashok (Ravi Aujla).

This is part satire, part farce as playwright William Gaminara imagines the conversation between the three mixed in with a few facts about what actually happened. Things take on a farcical tinge when  Cameron's room is double booked and there is a mishap with a pair of trousers. And there are plenty of laughs and chuckles throughout.

When Browne speaks as Beckham for the first time he got a round of applause. The voice combined with the haircut, sharp suit and waistcoat makes him uncannily like the famous footballer.
Tom Davey, as William, has slightly less to work with but hits home his punch lines with comic expertise.

But it is Bruce-Lockhart who shines as Cameron. The mannerisms are exaggerated just enough for comic effect but not so much as to detract too much and it is a masterful physical performance.

Naturally Gaminara plays on Cameron's Eton-ego, Beckham's reputation for being a bit dim and William's disconnect with the real world but it is playfully done.

If you aren't a fan of football, and I'm not, it doesn't really matter this is far more about personalities, popular perception and politics. There is much more than the FIFA bid to enjoy: William has just got engaged to Kate and there is a royal wedding to plan, Cameron is a new prime minister and still ironing out how he works with Nick Clegg and then there is the whole Andy Coulson/Rebekah Wade relationship. Hindsight makes for great comedy.

If I were to have one niggle it would be the portrayal of the women in the lives of these men. Kate and Posh, as unheard voices at the end of the phone, are easy stereotypes to play on but coupled with Penny it feels a little over done and there is no female counterweight. Penny is a stereotype that is seen too often and it grated after a while. It is a minor quibble in a play that is, overall, a great combination of silliness and satire.

Three Lions runs at St James Theatre, Victoria until May 2 and is two hours and 15 minutes with an interval.