Reviews

Like Science Fiction. Or Hitler.

Radical Islam has invaded the United States.  The streets are patrolled by “eggheads” (Arabs wearing white helmets), the major cities are devastated by bombings, and Americans are forced to remain inside—if they go outside, they risk being hanged (the women) or castrated (the men).  Some form of Sharia Law runs the country.  In other words, […]

Read more
Reviews

Why Don’t We Just Start at the Beginning?

It’s a common choice.  A young actor, known mostly for teen angst movies or shallow blockbusters, decides to take a stab at legitimacy.  It can go either way.  Recently, Disney Channel alumnus Shia LaBeouf humiliated himself in a series of interviews filled with choice nonsensical quotes like, “You give Terrence Malick a movie like Transformers, […]

Read more
Reviews

Mediocrity Always Trumps Genius

James Joyce loved Henrik Ibsen; he considered his work superior to Shakespeare’s.  In fact, an early, lost play of his—A Brilliant Career—was partially modeled on An Enemy of the People, which is currently being revived by the Manhattan Theatre Club at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre.  In a puerile attempt to emulate the Master, I […]

Read more
Reviews

In the Woods We Could Eat Rabbits

Lisa D’Amour’s Detroit is yet another entry in the never-ending American tradition of theater about angry drunk families who have secrets that will be revealed after the intermission.  You know these people already: Williams’ Kowalskis, O’Neill’s Tyrones, and Albee’s George, Martha, Nick and Honey.  Last year, we suffered through Jon Robin Baitz’s unimaginative, stultifying Other […]

Read more
Reviews

Beckett: The Musical?

When he was asked why he made a shot-for-shot remake of Psycho, Gus Van Sant replied, “So that no one else would have to.”  The same could be said of Sounding Beckett, a bizarre failure of an experiment that nevertheless justifies its existence.  Six composers, working with three short plays from Samuel Beckett’s “ghost period,” […]

Read more
Reviews

Waitin’ for Some Lover to Call

Five security guards sit around, bullshit, knit, listen to music, do crosswords, and make out—really anything but watch the wall of screens in front of them, which doesn’t seem to matter, since nothing ever happens on them anyway.  Actually, at one point, there is a B&E, but that takes place in between scenes.  What is […]

Read more
Reviews

Let’s rehearse your song

According to a popular but apocryphal story, successful Roman military commanders returning from battle would participate in elaborate parades in which the spoils of war were flaunted before the city; however, a slave would trail the triumphant commander, repeatedly whispering in his ear—depending in the variation—either “Memento te mortalem esse” (“Remember you are mortal”) or, […]

Read more