Speed-the-Plow

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© Simon Annand

Lindsay Lohan (Karen)

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© Simon Annand

Lindsay Lohan (Karen), Richard Schiff (Bobby Gould)

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© Simon Annand

Lindsay Lohan (Karen)

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Nigel Lindsay, Lindsay Lohan, Richard Schiff

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© Simon Annand

Nigel Lindsay (Charlie Fox)

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Richard Schiff, Lindsay Lohan, Nigel Lindsay, Lindsay Posner

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© Simon Annand

Richard Schiff (Bobby Gould)

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Richard Schiff, Lindsay Lohan

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Lindsay Lohan, Richard Schiff

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Lindsay Lohan, Richard Schiff

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Richard Schiff

Celebrity actress and all-round bad girl Lindsay Lohan is actually pretty decent in Lindsay Posner's revival of this Hollywood satire.

All right, let’s cut to the chase. Noted Hollywood fuck-up Lindsay Lohan is in a play. Even a cursory Google reveals that the world’s gossip press had collectively declared her West End debut a car crash before she’d even stepped on the stage. But the truth is – she’s absolutely fine. Decent, even. Solid.

She brings a surprising, slightly weird intensity to the role of Karen, the only female character in David Mamet’s 1988 Hollywood satire ‘Speed-the-Plow’. Temporary secretary to Richard Schiff’s big-shot Hollywood producer Bobby, Karen falls for a preposterously worthy film script about nuclear war that her boss only tossed her way because he wants to sleep with her. And Lohan’s Karen sets about evangelising about it with a fervour that’s part wining naivety, part creepy LA desperation.

It’s not an extraordinary performance – on press night she had to be prompted on a line – but certainly a reminder that the ‘Mean Girls’ star can act. I’d imagine that, if she can keep turning up on time, she’ll get whatever she was hoping for out of doing a play.
However, the quality of her performance is perhaps a side issue to the real question: is Lindsay Posner’s revival any good or not?

Schiff and Nigel Lindsay’s Charlie bring a pleasingly energetic snap, crackle and pop to Mamet’s dialogue, as a pair of money-grubbing old Hollywood bastards who won’t let the other finish a sentence. But by the time the final act comes round, with Bobby wracked by Karen-induced paroxysms of conscience, the whole thing had rather lost me. Partly, it’s due to Posner killing the galloping momentum of a short play by including an interval. Mostly, I think, it’s because ‘Speed-the-Plow’ is pretty clunky, its intriguing dialogue tied to a rudimentary dramatic structure.

It’s entertaining and nobody named Lindsay (or Richard) embarrasses themselves. But after all the build-up, the reality is fairly underwhelming.

Interview: Lindsay Lohan talks 'Speed-the-Plow' and a 'Mean Girls' sequel

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2.3 / 5

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LiveReviews|7
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onions3

Yes the play is a bit of a strange one but I enjoyed it,  I thought the acting was well done and energetic  as soon as Lindsay Lohan walked on I was very impressed by her acting.


Well worth seeing in my book  by reading the other boring old farts comments and petty picking on small mistakes which happens in live plays, makes me wonder how dull their lives are  go see it peeps

Robert C

The play was very short and was more of a slice of life than a complete story. I'm glad we bought tickets through time out and got a good deal. It was enjoyable but when Lohan forgot her lines, I'm ashamed to say, made it worth every penny. After all, I'm pretty sure thats what everyone paid to see.

madeline K

Lohan appeared uncomfortable even though she hadbeen doing the role for about 6 weeks when I saw it, I had to chew gum to try and keep myself awake. I see a lot of theatre and this was not worthy of a West End performance

Jessica M

I wish I never paid to come and see this play- it was awful from start to finish. It is a 3 man play, that is boring and doesn't ever go anywhere. The subject of the play and the incessant talking about a stupid radiation book made me want to leave, but out of respect for others I sat through it. The actors repeat themselves too much and talk too fast. It isn't funny. I could go on more about how bad it was, but just take my advice, don't waste your time or your hard earned money buying a ticket! I have now wasted some of my life sitting through that epic failure and I will let everyone know to not waste theirs either! Good Riddance!

Yasmin F

Illness meant that Richard Schiff was replaced by his understudy in the performance I saw (Adam Morris?) - he rose to the occasion and put in a good performance.  I love Mamet's use fo language and lines were well delivered.  The pace was a bit too frantic in places but the fast pace worked most of the time as a Mamet 'tone poem'. La Lohan was fine: the female character is something of a cipher and it would have been hard to give it 'the temporary' much substance, as there is so little time on stage for any character development or a glimpse of underying motivation.  Interesting audience too - Lohan's presence increased the audience age range exponentially.

Rex C

LiLo's performance was perfectly respectable, and I think she was good casting for the part, but this play stands and falls by the male leads.  The production ultimately doesn't succeed because of Richard Schiff's underpowered performance.  Made me wish I'd seen the Goldblum/Spacey version at the Old Vic a few years back.

Andrew D

Without doubt the worst play and theatre performance i have ever been to in london. When LL could remember her lines it was delivered with an almost panicked monotony, compounded by the utter dated and seemingly pointlessness of the script which should never have seen the light of day on a london stage. I have never been so bored, and each and every member of our wee theatre club (x5) who attended tonight all agreed. Even quality actors would struggle to bring this play to life. Avoid.