Dreamgun: Film Reads

Don't you forget about Dreamgun! The comedy script re-writers are back for another year at the Fringe with updated material and even a few new movies thrown in. Dreamgun performed at the slightly subdued 2021 Fringe and did an admirable job of making audiences laugh behind their masks, but this year they're back in action for the real thing. As usual, they alternate between around 11 movies, so if you enjoy them the first time you can always go back another night for a completely new experience!

Go see this show at Underbelly before they become wrapped up in a vicious legal battle.

There are two components to the Dreamgun Film Reads experience: the script and the cast. First, the dynamic writing team get a hold of a classic movie script – previous choices have included The Lion King, Harry Potter, and The Shawshank Redemption – and add their own spin, commentary and pop culture references to the material. Then they gather some comedians to read the scripts for the first time live on stage. It's a mixture between an improv show and a table read, where audience enjoyment relies on the actor's reaction to the material. If a joke in the script doesn't land, the performers are likely to get a bigger laugh for pointing that out and making fun of the flop. This is a good choice if you want to see something less risky than full-blown improv, and you can rely on the Irish to turn any situation into comedy gold (although I may be biased).

Dreamgun are always good for a laugh, so I'm not surprised to find their version of The Breakfast Club script so chock-full of puns and jokes that we probably miss about 30% of them. The audience is kept chuckling along throughout the show, with a few really big laughs sprinkled in. The Breakfast Club is a good choice as an '80s film most are familiar with – not that you can't enjoy their shows if you haven't seen the relevant movie, but it does help. My one minor complaint is the extra plot line added that doesn't seem to provide any extra humour or entertainment to the original story – perhaps they're starting to take bigger risks than the usual smaller script tweaks. I wouldn't say this one pays off, but it's always worth going the extra creative mile!

The narrator, Ronan Carey, is our guiding light as usual and keeps the audience on side with his clear enjoyment of every punchline - sometimes pausing to scold us (in a fun way) for not appreciating a well delivered pun. Hannah Mamalis a personal favourite, guarantees to give her performance 110% and commit fully to every role (often teenage boys), while Gavin Drea plays a wonderfully self-aware Bender and also every other character's mum and dad.

In general, the writers have a lot of fun with plot holes, era-appropriate references and problematic moments. The material is brimming with pop culture references; Jared Leto's Joker, GTA, and Love Island, to name a few. I particularly enjoy the very real legal document asking them to cease and desist using copyrighted material that was read out at the end. So, it might be a good idea to go see this show at Underbelly before they become wrapped up in a vicious legal battle.

Visit Show Website

Reviews by Kate Nora

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

Your favourite movies except an hour long and full of jokes! Dreamgun read a different film script every night, rewritten with jokes and performed by unprepared comedians. Including Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Jurassic Park and the Silence of the Lambs. Check web listing for full schedule. 'Hilarious live read-throughs of brilliantly rewritten film classics, a joy' (Dara Ó Briain). 'Merciless, hilarious. Consistently sharp, rapid-fire funny writing and crackling performances' ***** (Irish Times). 'Kept us in stitches and potentially destroyed a host of childhood memories.' ***** (BroadwayBaby.com).

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