Review: Cell

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CELL is about an elderly man (Ted) recently diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease.

* * *

Underbelly, Cowgate

Being a quiet-living soul, he finds comfort in stamp-collecting and looking after his pet goldfish. Just don’t disturb him while he’s reading.

Instead of wallowing in self-pity, Ted decides to go on a train journey across Europe and enjoy his mobility before it fails completely.

Thing is, Ted is a three-foot tall puppet.

An obvious medium in which to explore the physical issues of MND, the team behind this production certainly know a thing or three about utilising simple lighting, visual and sound effects in which to charm and engage their audience.

The downside is, the tale itself is bleakly depressing. In this case, as slow as the very disease it depicts.

Yes, Ted manages to fulfil an enjoyable holiday experience - with a bit of unexpected romance thrown in along the way - but it all leads to the inevitable.

It suggests you can learn how to live with MND, and that’s fine. But as a production, it leaves you feeling hopeless (perhaps that’s the point?), even if the creative talents of the company are skilfully adept at providing a feast for the eyes.

Until 29 August