Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 2/7/2014 (697 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
There’s a strong, but mostly unrealized, concept at the heart of this zombie tale performed by a large local cast: make the audience believe the theatre is under attack by legions of the undead.
You hear the hideous creatures pounding on the venue doors, snarling in a ravenous frenzy. You see the cast dwindle as members succumb one by one. Eventually the power goes out, leaving the show effectively lit by a flashlight.
But Alberta playwrights David Gabert and Collin Sylke (the latter also directs) fail to grasp that if you play horror straight, the audience has to engage with strongly developed characters and the pacing shouldn’t be saggy. The overlong 70-minute script reduces characters to superficial types and spends far too much time restating: "If we go out there, they will attack us!" Add to that some amateurish performances, speeches in which ordinary people use terms like "unrelenting," and sightline problems with action at the venue doorways, and Cursed inflicts no more than a gummy bite.
— Alison Mayes