Consent – reviews

actor Ben Chaplin in shirt and tie, shouting angrily at a woman who is bent over

Ben Chaplin. Photo by Sarah Lee.

Consent is Nina Raine’s new play, playing in a co-production at the National Theatre.

“One of Nina Raine’s most enjoyable and intelligent plays yet. Unreservedly recommended.”
Paul Taylor, The Independent

“A tense, entertaining modern-day tragi-comedy.”
Dominic Cavendish, Daily Telegraph

“This cracking new play is about barristers behaving badly… Scandalously funny
Robert Gore-Langton, Mail on Sunday

“Heartfelt approval. It is hard to overemphasise the multilayered subtlety of Nina Raine’s new play… Consent has a long future.”
Susannah Clapp, The Observer

“Modern classics don’t come along very often. “Consent” is, without a shadow of a doubt, just that: an intricately constructed philosophical drama that does for love, law and language and what Michael Frayn’s “Copenhagen” did for particle physics and Tom Stoppard’s “Arcadia” did with time. The play… makes grand abstract ideas both human and theatrical and, in one shot, elevates its writer Nina Raine into the major league of British playwrights… “Consent” is a watchmaker’s play, full of tiny moving parts. The whole thing pings with questions of consent — not just sexual but personal: set-ups, sacrifices and unforeseen consequences. Everything’s going on behind somebody’s back. No one ever has the full picture… Dizzyingly intelligent and beautifully judged.”
Matt Trueman, Variety

“A play of fierce moral intelligence”
Michael Billington, The Guardian

“Darkly funny, wrenchingly sad and inescapably provocative… A thought-provoking piece about the slipperiness of truth, fragility of relationships, and murky unknowability of justice.”
Marianka Swain, Broadway World

“Exceptional… a bit of a beaut all round” 
Ian Shuttleworth, Financial Times

“Full of astute observations and finely tuned comedy… There’s also an eagerness to address universal concerns — justice, betrayal, revenge and forgiveness. Yet more than anything else Raine is interested in language, which lies at the heart of every legal case and proves so worryingly slippery.”
Henry Hitchings, London Evening Standard

“Nina Raine’s brave new play about justice, empathy and consent… wallops the shit out of you for two-and-a-half hours. It is a play about things we prefer not to talk about; it is like going ten rounds with the elephant in the room, and at the end both of you are crying. There are also some good jokes… Playwrights should be talking about this stuff, and Raine doesn’t hold back”
Andrzej Lukowski, Time Out

“Hideously enjoyable… Raine ribs our adversarial judicial system mercilessly” 
Ann Treneman, The Times

“Thrilling revenge drama… Powerfully written, compelling to watch, and both entertaining and thought-provoking”
Aleks Sierz, The Arts Desk

“In Consent, Nina Raine has somehow taken the various legal arguments around the titular topic and woven them into a fiercely, shockingly funny narrative… The playwright also dissects the role of empathy in judgement and the balance between apology and punishment.”
Connor Campbell, The Upcoming

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