Adelaide University Fringe Club
Until 26 Feb 2010
Review by Stephen Davenport
“Operation Mincemeat” is a charming, smart and funny play based on a true story of deceit and
misdirection during World War II.
The real Operation Mincemeat helped persuade the Nazis to believe that, following their invasion of
North Africa, the Allies intended to invade Greece and Sardinia, rather than Sicily.
But the play, concentrates on the oddball boffins behind the planning of the audacious scheme. Topped
by a respectable cast, a good script by Simon Corbie and comfortable direction by Bronwyn Palmer, it is,
in its quiet, classical British war movie style, a fine production.
Although the piece is fun, fun, fun, it is clever enough to manoeuvre away from allegory and into the
definite, where possible, which ensures that it remains cute but never settles into a rhythmic sitcom.
The two male leads Matthew Taylor (Montagu) and Andreas Lohmeyer (Cholmondeley) are tremendous
as the men who conceive the scheme to transform an unknown corpse into the fictitious Major William
Martin – provided with an completely fabricated former life (theatre stubs, personal letters etc) – and
leave the seemingly drowned man, and his bogus invasion documents, off the coast of Spain, to be
picked up by a Nazi spy.
Sophia Bubner is particularly convincing as the intelligence secretary Pamela, who provides much of
dead man’s back story as his hoax fiancée.
“Operation Mincemeat” is blessed with many bright moments, nice lines and colourful characters all
wrapped up in an affable and entertaining package. It’s definitely worth the entrance fee.
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)