Friday, 13 December 2013

"American Psycho" - What the Reviews Say....

Well, last night it was the infamous "Press Night" for "American Psycho - The Musical" so what did the critics have to say?

First off, a couple of blogger reviews from earlier previews:

Gareth James called the staging "masterly" and had this to say about a certain Mr Smith:
Matt Smith doesn’t have a great voice, but it’s good enough for a psychopath! His acting is great though; manic enough but restrained enough too. 

West End Whingers gave it 5/5 and were rather impressed by certain aspects:
And who knew Smith was so ripped? When and how did he get into this kind of shape? We first see him rising through the stage floor in tighty whities and, for the more prurient who appreciate such things, there are other moments when he appears similarly dĂ©shabillĂ©.

Mark Shenton - theatre critic for "The Stage" and "Sunday Express" took to twitter to give his first impression:
Staged with arresting, cool style by Rupert Goold, AMERICAN PSYCHO has the arrestingly cool, surprisingly buff Matt Smith in title role. That's guaranteed a complete sell-out for AMERICAN PSYCHO; but this is more than just a hot ticket but a red hot, alluring & alarming show.

Jonathan Baz was another who gave it 5/5 and was, again, full of praise for Matt:
Smith represents perhaps the most inspired casting of recent years. Where the eponymous Doctor is at best semi-detached from society, Bateman’s mind is truly a world apart from his surroundings and when it comes to detachment, nobody does it better than Smith. His antic disposition early on sets him apart from his banker buddies and as his reason ebbs away, Smith perfectly captures Bateman's mental decline, never once losing focus nor resorting to cliche. His signature number Clean is a clinically chilling performance from an actor not usually associated with melody.

The Independent gave it 4/5, called it "diabolically slick" and noted about Matt:
His compelling Patrick is more opaque and much less manic than Christian Bale in Mary Harron's excellent movie. He wears his beauty as a mask; the lack of colour in his singing voice becomes part of Bateman's blankness.

The Mirror absolutely loved the performance - "a stylish feast" - and praised the choreography, the cast and the production.  As for Matt:
A ripped “hard body” in the distorted world of high finance, drugs, easy sex and narcissism Smith's character is as ugly on the inside as he is buffed and toned handsome on the outside.
Smith hasn't the traditional musical theatre voice but that adds to his telling of a man striving for meaning to his life above and beyond superficial pleasures during a performance which he's barely off stage for a moment. 
As the vain mass murderer of Manhattan - a role light years from Doctor Who – Smith kills it.

Another 4/5 from The Guardian who praise Matt's "beautifully defined performance as the deluded hero":
Inevitably the stand-out performer is the excellent Matt Smith who, with his square jaw and clean-cut aspect, perfectly embodies Bateman's preoccupation with appearances. 
But he also has the capacity to suggest there is a strange emotional vacancy and spiritual hollowness within this solitary fantasist. Without enlisting our sympathy, he makes Bateman wholly believable.

The London Evening Standard continued the 4/5 trend, remarking on the possibility of a West End transfer and, of course, singling out Matt's performance:
A musical version of Bret Easton Ellis’s gruesome cult novel American Psycho sounds like the punchline of a sick joke. But this skilful interpretation is built around a superb performance by Matt Smith, who serves up an intriguing blend of nihilism, cold vanity and twisted charm.

Well done to Matt and the rest of the cast and crew of "American Psycho" - personally, I can't wait to see it in January.