The Full Monty – UK Tour
The Full Monty by Simon Beaufoy is based on the 1997 Fox Searchlight Pictures motion picture that gained huge critical and commercial success.
And its not hard to see why – The Full Monty is a raucous comedy that can have the audience in stitches whilst dealing with issues of unemployment, working class culture, impotence, homosexuality and suicide head on.
Set in the Steel City – Sheffield – The Full Monty tells the story of 6 unemployed men who decide to form a male striptease act in order to make a healthy profit and better their individual situations. Some of the men – including best friends Gaz and Dave – are former steel workers who have fallen victim to the cuts of industry under Margaret Thatcher’s reign. For Gaz the money will mean being able to continue to see his son and, as the leader of the pack, it is his decision that the men shall be better than the Chippendales as they will go “the full monty”!
The impressive factory setting by Robert Jones provides the backdrop for the entire show, with clever sliding doors and lighting effects that change the location of the scene.
Gary Lucy (Eastenders, The Bill) takes the lead as the anchor character; Gaz. He has a powerful relationship with his on-stage son Nathan and was convincing as the unemployed father fighting for his rights, even if his accent did fluctuate a little throughout.
The chemistry between the 6 main characters is spurred along by their quick witted banter and is thoroughly entertaining to watch. It is rather endearing as the audience travels with them on their journey to becoming the next Chippendales!
Andrew Dunn (Dinnerladies, Coronation Street) is a quality actor and a superb casting as Gerald, the man who has been hiding the fact he is jobless from his unsuspecting wife for 6 months, who takes on the challenging role of choreographing the routine.
Anthony Lewis (Emmerdale) is superb as the loveable Lomper who is like a rabbit in the headlights before finding his own in Gaz’s band of merry men. Kai Owen (Torchwood) is equally watchable as Dave who thinks his weight will stop him from being a hit with the ladies – judging by the audiences reaction it is safe to say that it doesn’t!
The Full Monty is hilarious as it is heartwarming. Director Jack Ryder really has mastered the art of being able to pull the audience into the storyline.
With a sizzling finale that ends with a saucy routine from 6 very ballsy actors – this is a show full of laughter, sincerity and understated charm.
The Full Monty plays the Liverpool Empire Theatre until Saturday 12th November before continuing it’s UK Tour. To book tickets visit www.atgtickets.com/liverpool.