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The Captain of Kopenick

The Captain of KopenickOn Thursday I went to see The Captain of Kopenick at the National Theatre.

Starring Antony Sher in the lead role this comic play is a satire on German militarism. Essentially the story is about a petty criminal who manages to steal from the local authorities by dressing up as a Captain of the army reserves. It is about just how much you can get away with when wearing the right uniform.

I didn’t find the comedy side-splittingly funny but it was an enjoyable evening. There were moments that I found reminiscent of Porridge and others of Dad’s Army, but as you got towards the end the power of the underlying political message came through strongly and effectively. Even more so when you realise that the play was first performed in Germany in 1931.

The killer line of the play is;

“I used to think all the trouble in the world was caused by people giving orders. Now I reckon that it’s people being so willing to take them.”

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