I’m never going to get around to writing individual posts for these and since it’s my least-popular feature, I thought I’d lump a bunch of quick-hit reviews together. Enjoy! Or not.
In High, Kathleen Turner plays a foul-mouthed alcoholic nun in a rehab center. Big stretch! She was great but I thought the plot was very movie-of-the-week and the script was weak. An actual line of dialog:
Oh, you don’t say? Well, beat me over the head with a big obvious stick. The guy playing the young drug addict was AC-TING and E-MO-TING too much. But my two friends loved it, so who knows? The reviews come out Tuesday. Then I’ll know what to think.
Marisa Tomei is my pretend girlfriend, along with Mary Louise Parker. They, on the other hand, are unaware of my existence. The New Group’s Marie and Bruce is :90 minutes of a wife’s raging, venomous hatred of her husband. If you think that’s uncomfortable to sit through, you’re right. Both Tomei and Frank Whaley, her punching bag husband, are terrific. They leave it all on the stage, including for real tears. But if you’re feeling kind of blue and insecure about your relationship, then I’d steer clear of this one. A few years back they made this into a movie with Julianne Moore and Matthew Broderick. I can’t IMAGINE what that looks like.
I was looking forward to Driving Miss Daisy with slight trepidation. I thought it might be a lot of Old Lions of the Theater-type histrionics. Well, it wasn’t. Darth Vader’s Hoke was quiet and seemed truer to the spirit of the character than Morgan Freeman’s (although Freeman originated it). And, boy, can Vanessa Redgrave act! (That’s like pointing out that water is wet.) A highlight of the season.
The funniest/saddest/truest thing you can see right now is David Lindsay-Abaire’s Good People. Francis McDormand, a down and out “Southie” from the wrong side of Boston, looks up Tate Donovan, a former fling who made it out of the neighborhood and is now a doctor. She gives an utterly selfless performance, looking drab and beaten by life throughout. The entire cast of six is spectacular. I recognize some of the characters in this show from my past and it stayed with me for a long while.
Richard Thomas plays the bumbling idiot Timon in Shakespeare’s rarely-produced Timon of Athens. Timon gives all of his money away to his friends and then turns into a hermit and violent misanthrope when he goes broke and none of his “friends” will lend him a nickle. It didn’t get strong reviews when it opened but I really liked it a lot. And tickets were a measly $15 bucks! C’mon! A top-notch Shakespeare production at The Public Theater (one of the best venues in town) for mere pennies. You can’t go wrong, folks.