"Cynical take on sci-fi films"
by Matthew Partridge for remotegoat on 24/01/19

“The Empire Has Fallen”, currently running at the White Bear in Kennington, is a dark satirical comedy, written by David Fenne and directed by Michael Powell, that looks at what really happens after the end of every science fiction movie. General Grumm has overthrown the evil Emperor, with the help of his daughter, Lady Anina (Hebe Renard) and the mysterious Phoenix (Lottie Davies). However, her work is not done since she now has to deal with the aftermath, with only Barnabas (David Fenne), one of the few members of the previous regime left alive, to help her. Meanwhile Lady Anina has her own plans for the Empire’s future.

Many science fiction and fantasy writers have used their book to make satirical comments about real-world politics most notably Terry Pratchett’s in his Discworld novels. However, this it the first time that someone has attempted to do so on the stage. Films buffs will also appreciate the numerous parodies of science fiction and fantasy films, such as: Hunger Games, Star Wars and Fifth Element. The main trio of Fenne, Renard and Tooney are also strong actors who are able to bring their characters to life.

The opening torture scene is a little excessive, while some of the later sketches could also be tightened up a bit. Still, Fenne deserves credit for coming up with a quirky idea, and with a little editing it could really shine.

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