For about five years in the late 80s and early 90s, I lived in towns without cinemas.
For a while, we had weekly screenings at the local RSL in one of those towns, but by and large, I missed out on a lot of cinema during that time.
And I guess that’s why I’ve never seen “Rain Man”.
I haven’t been completely ignorant of the film. I knew about the basic premise, and I knew about the Qantas reference. But beyond that, I’ve never really sought out the film as one of those “must-see” moments.
Now, after seeing tonight’s production of “Rain Man” at The Ensemble Theatre in Sydney, I think I will.
Tonight’s production centred around Alex Dimitriades playing the Tom Cruise character, and David Mitchell playing the Dustin Hoffman character.
Both lead actors were excellent. They were completely believable in their roles. During intermission, we chatted to a woman who teaches children with autism, who told us Mitchell had captured the movements, the ticks, and the physical characteristics of the disability well.
Although I remember Alex Dimitriades fondly from “Head On”, and quite enjoyed him in what he brought to “Underbelly” I was very impressed with his stage debut for Ensemble. He got the American accent just right, and he has a great on-stage physical presence.
But mostly, they made me care for the characters.
As we discussed the play afterwards, we agreed there were no apparent weaknesses in the production.
In summary, it was a really good story, that was well-directed, well-acted, set against a simple background, and which MOVED the audience. In theatre terms, this was pretty bloody good. Highly recommended.
And now, of course, I must get a copy of the movie.
Oh… and in case you’re wondering… Dimitriades… real life… drinks afterwards… hot as!