This Knocked Up studies the social baggage of two pregnant couples
REVIEW Two young family-hungry couples, one unassuming victim of the staff Christmas party, and a lonely alky wife and mom-bonking boy-next-door all find themselves variously knocked up, around, and for a loop by the reproductive process in Imaginative Productions' stage adaptation of its 2006 independent film, "conceived" and directed by Tonya Foster. And reproduction really is a process containing as much social baggage as genetic code in these predicaments which, while ranging from the urban banal to the tragically suburban, are all pretty much as thematically familiar as familial.
Unfortunately, the relatively slim potential in this otherwise pregnant theme is rarely pursued with much vigor or insight, as the multicharacter storyline meanders away from its subjects in seeming perplexity as to what to do with them. Further muting things is a muffled soundscape that sounds like unintended lobby noise. The more workable areas of drama and comedy, meanwhile, suffer from uneven performances and static direction although, ironically, a visit by single preggy waitress Anna (a relatively strong and sympathetic Quinne Brown) to an actors workshop-cum-support group led by a deeply histrionic drama instructor (a vibrant Erin Coker) arrives as one of the more unexpected and apt scenes.
KNOCKED UP Through Oct. 18. Thurs.Sat., 8 p.m., $23$25. Studio 300 Theatre, 442 Post, SF. 1-888-410-8355, www.imaginativeproductions.com