Review: Out Innerspace’s Major Motion Picture

Interpretative dance is an interesting creature in that it is offered a greater degree of freedom than its fellow artistic counterparts. As such, therein lies the question: how interpretative can interpretive dance be before sacrificing coherent narration?

Major Motion Picture, the newest performance of Vancouver’s dance group, Out Innerspace, is an intriguing, if somewhat perplexing theatrical experience. Straight from its opening, Major Motion Picture establishes itself as a dark enigma, its performers working together in abrupt shifts between fluid unity and spastic division. It is an enticing display of smoke and mirrors. Omnipresent during the opening scene is an overwhelming cloud of uncertainty and fear. While the amazing talents of the performers cannot be disputed, the performance suffers a few narrative hiccups, which ended up pulling me out of the moment when I, like every other theatre-goer, just wanted to be enraptured by it.

Thanks to its effective and absorbing use of visual media, strobe lights, and fog machines, Major Motion Picture delves from dreary to eerie, concocting enemies reminiscent of horror icons seen in Paranormal Activity, Slender, Sleepy Hollow, and Gollum from Lord of the Rings. In the wake of these ominous appearances, performers are left with unease, succumbing to suspicion and mistrust against former friends and invisible monsters caged within. As the show evolves, it tackles thoughtful themes of identity, reversal of allegiances, and taking meaningful shots at a society steeped in patriarchy. Combined with a satisfying, powerful finish, Major Motion Picture is haunted and twisted, yet remains a night of solid and unforgettable entertainment.

About the author

Carey Bray

Carey Bray is a local artist, actor/director, and writer residing in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. He has previously written reviews and interviews for The Coast's 2015/2016 Halifax Fringe Festival, Atlantic Books Today, and the online blog, Hello Dartmouth. You'll find more of Carey's work on his blog, Drifted.