That’s No Movie – 7/28/18 – 3:00pm – Westport Coffee House

That’s No Movie was a hilarious hour that provided three improved movies as well as spin-off mini-skits in between. The premise was a film festival, and our Audience had dubbed our experience the very hipster Timber Film Festival, and it featured a Disney Princess Movie, a Slasher Film, and a Hitchcock Romance featured in Biblical Times.

The set up for the show was clearly explained by host Bobby McCosky, which I think helped the experience. In addition to a traditional improv show, the cast would explain the shots of the movie, the way the movie looked and felt, and the descriptions of what was happening in the scenes. At first, I thought it would be cumbersome and daunting for this to actually be funny. It was the opposite. Having the shots explained, or the genre tropes pointed out, made it hilarious.

The cast with John Adams, Adam Hoelscher, Cody Lindenberger, Lauren Pope, Gabriela Sa Teles, and Aron Wallis had to be on point to make sure they created three stories that were funny and fit the requirements of the genres. This requires talent not only in improv, but the ability to carry a thread and keep the thread of a story intact. There were a couple of times the story was being lost, or muddled, and another player would get the story back on the rails or clarify something. This is a group able to think quickly and communicate effectively with each other and the audience.

Something that was extremely refreshing was the lack of toxic masculinity, sexism, homophobia, etc. that can so often be linked to mainstream comedy on television or in movies. There were many chances in the improvisation where it could have gone south. However, this group never took the lazy way out. Don’t misunderstand, it’s not clean comedy, but the jokes and comedy don’t rely on making fun of gender, race, or orientation, which has gotten old in the world of tv or movie comedy.

This is a group of highly intelligent, professional, hilarious comedians who are able to navigate complicated threads of improvised dialogue and plot points and wrap it up in creative ways. They knew the subject matter, they knew when the audience was lost, and they knew when to wrap up. Anyone who is interested in acting in improv, or interested in writing for comedy, should watch this group of actors. There is a lot to learn here. If you missed them during KC Fringe, keep an eye out for other performances in the future. They are not to be missed.

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