Reviews

The Name Your Mother and Father Gave You

In 2003, at the end of the Second Liberian Civil War, three women wearing American hand-me-downs live in a shanty as the wives of a commanding officer for the rebel group Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy.  For most of Danai Gurira’s Eclipsed, they are referred to by their titles rather than their given names: Number […]

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Reviews

A Smooth and All-Able Pen

Many of the pleasures of seeing a complete Henriad are expected.  We witness the full transformation of the bawdy Prince Hal (Alex Hassell), in whom his father once saw “riot and dishonour stain the brow,” into King Henry V, capable of such rousing rhetoric as the St. Crispian’s Day Speech.  We watch old Jack Falstaff, the endlessly charismatic […]

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Reviews

He Seems to Have an Invisible Touch

Bret Easton Ellis’ American Psycho is a nasty, tedious novel—forty pages of decent social commentary prolonged for almost four hundred.  Mary Harron’s 2000 film vastly improves on its source material, skillfully balancing comic violence with Wall Street satire, with an over-the-top performance from Christian Bale and a rocking ‘eighties soundtrack adding a vibrancy that was missing from Ellis’ extended prose descriptions […]

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Reviews

Presume Not That I Am the Thing I Was

Rumour (Antony Byrne), a force responsible for “Stuffing the ears of men with false reports,” enters to address the audience.  He means to “noise abroad that Harry Monmouth fell / Under the wrath of noble Hotspur’s sword.”  Typically “painted full of tongues,” this Rumour bears a t-shirt with Rolling Stones logo, a clever if somewhat irrelevant touch.  Henry […]

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Reviews

Enter, for Here Too There Are Gods!

A picture of a decrepit, present-day Jerusalem neighborhood is projected behind the actors, who sit in a row of chairs when they are not onstage.  They begin out of costume and inform the audience they are about to tell a story; during intermission, two perform the Muslim evening prayer.  The impetus, I assume, behind this revival of […]

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Reviews

I’ll Play My Father

Henry IV (an appropriately weary Jasper Britton), who had planned to alleviate his guilt over the death of Richard II with a voyage to Jerusalem (“I’ll make a voyage to the Holy Land, / To wash this blood off from my guilty hand”), soon finds his kingdom internally divided: unrest in Scotland and Wales, rebellion from […]

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Reviews

The Landlord of England

A coffin rests center stage.  In Shakespeare’s text, Richard II begins with the eponymous king (David Tennant) sitting upon his throne and arbitrating a dispute between Henry Bolingbroke (Jasper Britton) and Thomas Mowbray (Christopher Middleton), the former accusing the latter of participating in the successful assassination of the Duke of Gloucester, the king’s uncle.  However, in […]

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