Money Shot bills itself as “a carnal journey of pornographic proportions.” I think that pretty well sums up this depressing piece of drama. That is not to say it is not well acted or written; the actors are very good and the writing is of high caliber. But I find a snuff play to have little or any social significance except as an expression of the depths this country can sink to.
I didn’t like David Mamet’s Speed the Plow with its detestable, unlikable cast of Hollywood trash. I like this even less, as it moves the action to the Valley to portray five guys discussing and making a porno film that will knock the socks off their internet viewers and propel them to big bucks and notoriety. The characters will stoop to anything to try and get the desired affect, finally making a snuff film when they discover that the girl they used in their porno was fifteen.
The cast, as I said, was quite good. James Jordon plays Bean. I can’t tell you anything else about him because his bio tells us nothing except that he hates to write bios. Dante Walker plays Lance but seems a little uncomfortable. He has, after all, played Othello. Gregory Myhre is the scary leader of the group. His brother Marty is a psycho, well played by Shawn Colten. He spends most of the play looking out the window describing horrendous goings on in the streets and the heavens. The idea, I think, is to show that despite the fact that the world outside is disintegrating, the lowlife characters are too self-absorbed to notice.
Kabhil Joseph is the hotheaded camera operator “the cunt” – yep, you read it right. Danielle See plays the lost teen, and has some rather complicated monologues to deliver. She is not up to the task. Justin Huen is the director and Daniel Keleher the playwright. The company has the endorsement of some impressive names, including Dr. Leon Katz and Mel Shapiro, both of U.C.L.A. and the professional theater world. Money Shot is exciting, disgusting, engrossing, and pointless but worth a look-see.
Money Shot plays at the Alexandria Hotel through Nov. 23rd. Tickets are available through the producers, Dead Art Form Theatre, or by calling 323-960-7776.