Review: Deborah Pearson - The Wonder Striker (a work in progress sharing)

Deborah Pearson performs The Wonder Striker

Deborah Pearson performs The Wonder Striker - Credit: submitted

Time is relative, it moves at different speeds – but sometimes that gets stretched to the extreme.

Deborah Pearson's The Wonder Striker was billed as a 40 minute show but ended up lasting 90; that might be excused for an early work in progress, as this was, but not when its core is a film screening with a fixed duration.

The movie in question is a Hungarian political satire, based in a fictional country ruled by football where the machinations of the despotic leaders extend to poaching Ferenc Puskás, a soccer legend of the time, in a bid to win favour. A case of mistaken identity instead leads to them hiring a pair of con artists, with ensuing chaos as the trick gradually becomes undone.

Performed at Norwich Arts Centre as part of this year's Norfolk and Norwich Festival, Pearson gave a loose translation and commentary as the film played out, revealing a family connection to the piece and mid-way through segueing to a re-staged interview with the film's writer.

The interplay of the film, Russian politics, and her own family's role has promise, but Pearson's faux-casual delivery of the first segment wore thin and the real-time recreation of her conversation with the screenwriter was over long.

As a half-hour documentary this could be an enjoyable and engaging insight into Eastern Europe. At the same length, ironically, as a football match, it just didn't deliver enough reward – though as Pearson said at the end, the show is still in flux. Hopefully as the show develops the telling will tighten; the material deserves it.

Most Read

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter