Laughing at the Speed Of Light

Take a colossal body of work, condense it into ninety minutes or so, drop it in the hands of the funniest cast you can find, and you’ll understand in a minute the sheer brilliance of those crazies from the Reduced Shakespeare Company, who first revolutionized the campy world of stage comedy with the now-classic Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged. Bob Wells of Denver’s Avenue Theater can appreciate the wealth of humor in RSC’s franchise, which has gone on to mock everything from the Bible to Western civilization over the years — so deciding to stage Completely Hollywood (abridged) was a total no-brainer.

“It isn’t high theater,” Wells admits. But it is a raucous joyride through an incredible 187 colliding Hollywood movies, based on the old adage that everything Hollywood puts out is just a combination two old movies (and in one case, three). The side-splitting result? Snow White and the Seven Samurai. My Left Footloose. And so on, ad infinitum. Add to the mix Wells’s hand-picked cast of Steven Burge, Seth Caikowski and Eric Mather, chosen specifically for their quick-witted hilarity, and it’s a done deal.

Completely Hollywood opens tonight with a 7:30 p.m. performance at the Avenue Theater, 417 East 17th Avenue, and shows continue through October 22; for information and tickets, $20 to $25, visit www.avenuetheater.com or call 303-321-5925.
Thursdays-Saturdays, 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Oct. 9, 2 p.m.; Mon., Oct. 10, 7:30 p.m. Starts: Aug. 11. Continues through Oct. 22, 2011

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Susan Froyd started writing for Westword as the "Thrills" editor in 1992 and never quite left the fold. These days she still freelances for the paper in addition to walking her dogs, enjoying cheap ethnic food and reading voraciously. Sometimes she writes poetry.
Contact: Susan Froyd