REVIEW: Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody), The Customs House, South Shields

Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody).
Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody).

Dinosaur Park stomped into South Shields last night and made me roar with laughter.

The Jurassic Parody was a hit at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and it’s not hard to see why.

Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody).

Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody).

It’s a hilarious but touching tale that combines laugh-out-loud comedy with emotional turmoil, family trauma and a love for Jurassic Park.

We’re taken to the Lyme Regis Community Centre, where the Park family is hosting a screening of their favourite movie on the one-year anniversary of their palaeontologist mum’s tragic death.

Dad Terry (Frode Gjerløw), daughter Jade (Maria Askew) and son Noah (Simon Maeder), were out in the audience as we walked in, greeting us and welcoming us to the screening, before taking to the stage to make short speeches about their lost loved one.

But when they discover the Jurassic Park VHS (which their mum taped off the telly) has gone missing, Noah begins acting out scenes from the movie in a desperate bid to save the evening.

Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody).

Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody).

The show, from Superbolt Theatre, is wonderfully imaginative, hilariously funny, and brilliantly bonkers.

It’s a real family show, but does carry a PG rating.

Kids in the audience howled with laughter as the trio of actors stomped around the stage pretending to be dinosaurs and put on silly dance displays to Britney Spears’ songs.

There are a few mentions of more grown up things, but the sort of things that will probably go straight over most children’s heads.

Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody).

Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody).

The show flashes back and forth from scenes from the film – including an ingenious portrayal of the moment a T-Rex chases down the park owner’s grandchildren and is lured away, the memorial screening at the community centre, and earlier moments in the Park family’s history.

We get a real insight into the struggles they’ve been through; Terry and his wife splitting up, the kids moving in with him, then back with mum, her sad death, and the guilt they feel about it.

It’s a show that’s so original and different, that you just have to see it to believe it.

The DIY dinosaurs and props they use re-create moments of movie magic hilariously and impressively.

It’s a comedy romp of Jurassic proportions.