Frenetically fueled by pill-popped speed, The Studio 2ndStage’s production of British playwright Jez Butterworth’s Mojo hits the right tempo for a journey to rock-n-rolla gangland. These petty mobsters are simmering with ineptitude and obscenity while wielding cutlass and cake. In a 1950’s Britain fast overrun by squealing girls obsessed with rockstars, they are grasping at a chance to make it big. Unfortunately for them, it’s just not going to work out.
Butterworth’s play won the 1995 Olivier Award, and the frantic rhythm of the language is the real star here. Director Christopher Gallu has his ensemble cast embracing that jittery, junkie cadence with total commitment. While the accents may not always be spot on, the underlying backbone of the language is a joy – interjections and overlapping dialogue combined with playful postering that can turn to danger on a dime.
It feels like the love child of Guy Ritchie and David Mamet.