Reviews

We Are Not Cold-Blooded

On the night she conceives, Serafina Delle Rose (Marisa Tomei) wakes up with a burning sensation on her breast. It was a “pain like a needle,” she tells a friend, “quick, quick, hot little stitches.” When she undresses, Serafina sees her husband’s rose tattoo on her own chest: a sign that they are going to […]

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Reviews

Some Superstitions Are Very Nice

In All My Sons, the play that would precede Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller offers another portrait of an American family withering under the pressures of capitalism.  The entire play is set in the backyard of Joe Keller (Tracy Letts), a successful suburban businessman who sold parts to the military during the war.  A scandal involving […]

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Reviews

Laughing and Choking Looked the Same

In his introductory note on Marvin’s Room, playwright Scott McPherson distinguishes between death and dying: as a child, his father wrapped his car around a telephone pole—this was death.  Also as a child, his grandmother gave way to her cancer as he watched Ed Sullivan on the television at the foot of her bed—that was dying.  Marvin’s Room, then, […]

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Reviews

I Wondered What Robert Newton Would Think of This

Clive Owen drapes both hands over the arms of his chair. With a taut stillness that could be mistaken for calm, he looks exactly like a lion in the moments before it will pounce. One gets the feeling he could rape or murder without mussing up his suit or disheveling his thickly gelled hair. His movements […]

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Reviews

¿Quién Sabe?

At the offices of the George H. Jones Company, platitudes rap out as quickly as the clickety-clack of the typewriters.  “Hot dog!” cries an office boy (Ryan Dinning) in response to nearly everything.  “Haste makes waste,” warns an elderly stenographer (Henny Russell).  And George H. Jones (Michael Cumpsty) himself informs all his employees, “The early […]

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Reviews

Match Me, Charlie

I’ve never been too enthusiastic about Clifford Odets’ dated, left-wing didacticism, and even if The Big Knife leans closer to Sweet Smell of Success than Waiting for Lefty, it waters down the former’s cynicism with the latter’s heavy-handedness.  Towards the end of the play, after identifying himself as a Hamlet, the Hollywood star Charlie Castle […]

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