Theatre review: God’s Property at the Soho Theatre

16:08 04 March 2013

Chima (Kingsley Ben-Adir) and Onochie (Ash Hunter) in God

Chima (Kingsley Ben-Adir) and Onochie (Ash Hunter) in God's Property at the Soho Theatre. Picture: Helen Maybanks

Archant

“We have nothing in common but our surname,” Onochie tells his older brother in God’s Property.

Onochie (Ash Hunter) and Holly (Ria Zmitrowicz) in God's Property at the Soho Theatre. Picture: Helen MaybanksOnochie (Ash Hunter) and Holly (Ria Zmitrowicz) in God's Property at the Soho Theatre. Picture: Helen Maybanks

The latter, Chima, has just arrived back at the family flat in Deptford after serving a 10-year jail sentence.

Born of Irish and Nigerian parents, he finds 16-year-old Onochie (Ash Hunter) is a skinhead who chooses to believe he is no longer black.

We learn the proudly black Chima has been blamed by the hostile community for the death of a local white girl and they are out for revenge.

Although the play is set in 1982, with its references to racism and riots, it could just as easily be today.

Former EastEnders actor Arinze Kene’s script inhabits a similar world to the film This is England and its TV spin-offs and gives each brother multiple chances to shine as their backstory unfolds.

There is a lot of humour and tension – often at the same time – mixed with drama and conflict.

Ria Zmitrowicz is also excellent as Onochie’s would-be girlfriend, Holly, who seems to channel Lauren from The Catherine Tate Show without steering too much into parody, and keeping the drama real.

It does take quite a large suspension of disbelief when it is revealed why Chima was jailed but if you go with it and don’t ask yourself too many questions, it’s worthwhile.

The play is just 90 minutes long without an interval and this works in its favour as it seems more realistic and it would be a shame to break the tension by sledgehammering in an interval just for the sake of it.

At the end of that hour and a half, after much conflict, soul-searching and making up, Chima tells his brother: “We do have something in common because you are my favourite too.”

God’s Property is at Soho Theatre until March 23.

Related articles

Latest Stories

Yesterday, 17:39
Four people have been found guilty of murdering Dean Mayley in Greenford (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

A gang of youths have been found guilty of murdering a young man with the mental age of nine after a knife-point mugging was caught on a graphic and shocking CCTV video.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:31
A horse pulling a funeral cortège like this one sadly dropped dead in Hornchurch [Photo by Dave Thompson/PA images]

A grieving family were further distressed when a horse pulling a relative’s hearse dropped dead during a funeral procession.

Read more

Top Stories

Promotions

Advanced running and training technology for beginners up to elite athletes

If you’re thinking of adding running treadmill to your fitness routine, you’re on the right track! There are several advantages to running on a treadmill versus running outdoors.

Renault-Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the ZOE was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

When no simple way to find Real Ale was at hand, 4 Ale enthusiasts got together to allow anyone with a smart phone to find Real Ale no matter where they happened to be, this was the birth of the Perfect Pint app.

Quizzes

I'm only going to say this once: Stand. On. The. Right.

James Bond is Britain’s most famous secret agent, and the capital is its most famous city, so it makes sense that 007 would live and work here when he isn’t gallivanting around the world.

Read more
Can you find the animals hiding in London station names? (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

You may not realise it but there are animals hiding in stations across London? Play our quiz and see if you can you find them:

Read more
Can you guess the Tube station just from the outside? (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

How well do you know your Tube stations? Can you guess these Underground stops from the pictures taken outside them?

Read more