One of the biggest and most ambitious shows ever seen on the Edinburgh Fringe, Fuerzabruta is also the most expensive, at £25 a head. But by employing a custom-made overhead swimming pool, metres of foil, thousands of slivers of paper and a lot of trashing of scenery – all contained within a mobile theatre, a vast black tent – it can't be cheap to put on. And that's before adding in the 2,000 litres of water pumped into each show, and the vast quantities of dry ice squirted liberally around the arena.
The Argentinian company, De La Guarda, which opened London's Roundhouse last year, has developed its unique creation on a grand scale.
Against Gaby Kerpel's pounding soundscape of edgy club beats and eerie screeching, a sequence of sometimes bewildering images appears out of the darkness. The promenading audience supplies its own narrative as a white-suited man runs flat out overhead. Shot through the chest, he nevertheless continues running, as if for his life: it feels like being on a Bond movie set.
A trio – balanced precariously on a high ledge – dives and disappears into emptiness. Beyond a gigantic, colourfully lit silver foil curtain, swooshing gently, elfin-like figures somersault through the air. A couple harnessed to a revolving sail are tossed violently around, while bathers gambol boisterously around a transparent box coursing with waves of pulsing water.
The skill and daring of these 12 performers attempting to break free from some nightmare danger is breathtaking, even if many of the stunts appear recklessly driven – as the title Fuerzabruta suggests – by brute force.
To 1 September, not 20 and 28 August (0870 169 0100)