Clue board game billiard room

review: “Clue” from board game to movie, and now the play–Boxcar

review: “Clue” from board game to movie, and now the play–Boxcar Theatre’s brilliant staging makes this a must-see, through February 12, 2011

A play based on a movie based on a board game–it makes for a curious artistic vision. Peter Matthews and Nick A. Olivero, the artistic directors of San Francisco’s tiny Boxcar Theatre, have meticulously crafted Clue the play for the past four years. Even before it opened to a sold out audience last Wednesday, Clue’s run had been extended an additional two weeks. The team hit pay dirt when word got out that their play was ingeniously staged like the classic board game. The audience is seated six feet above peering down at a life-size reproduction of the game’s exact playing board, replete with 9 rooms–the Ballroom, Conservatory, Billiard Room, Library, Study, Hall, Lounge, Dining Room and Kitchen. In fact, everything is like the board game, rather the 1985 cult movie that ripped off the board game.

Ever done a major home remodel? The interior of Boxcar has that feel–there’s scaffolding, narrow passages and a flight of stairs to navigate. The seating arrangement is a square, accommodating 11 people snugly on each side, 44 individuals in all, who look down and watch murder unfold amongst a group of six people summoned to a Tudor mansion on a foggy night. The feel is very intimate, up close, something no big production could pull off.

You’ll immediately recognize the six guests–Colonel Mustard, Professor Plum, Miss Scarlet, Mr. Green, Mrs. Peacock and Mrs. White–and the butler. First, Mr. Boddy, the mansion’s owner is found dead at the foot of cellar stairs by Miss Scarlett. The cause of death has yet to be determined but there are 6 objects around the mansion that could have been used–a dagger, a rope, a piece of lead pipe, a candlestick, a revolver and a wrench. Tensions build as bodies mount and the guests shuffle from room to room having discovered that they all have at least one thing in common–each one of them is being blackmailed by Mr. Boddy and each one thus has motive to kill. With secrets unfolding and secret passages running underneath the audience’s seats and three complex endings to ponder, this thrilling who dunnit is the best Clue rip off yet.


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FAQ

avatar
Who was the killer in the board game clue?

In the board game, it can be anyone.
In the 1985 movie, there were three endings. In one, it was Miss Scarlet (Leslie Ann Warren), in another Mrs. Peacock (Eileen Brennan), and in the third it was "everyone" except for Mr. Green (Michael McKean).

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