The fall theater season got underway last week and the first sampling, from the almost always reliable David Mamet, left me a little cold. Two Unrelated Plays is about to open at the Atlantic Theater Company. It’ll be interesting to see what the professional critics have to say.The first play, School, was a brief :15 minute conversation between two teachers. It was a primer of Mamet syntax; half finished sentences, partial thoughts and colliding lines. You either love it or you hate it. When it works it’s magic. I saw Ron Silver and Joe Mantegna in Speed the Plow when it opened [mumble-mumble] years ago. They found a groove and watching them bat lines back and forth was like watching a really great tennis match. That sort of timing was missing from this first piece. And the subject matter seemed trite.
The second play, Keep Your Pantheon was an enjoyable farce but I don’t think it’s going to win him another Pulitzer, that’s for damn sure. It’s a comedy in the mistaken-identity-double-entendre-Borscht-Belt-humor vein and it was fun but the lead actor got on my nerves to the point of distraction. I think he was *suppose* to get on my nerves, but probably not to where it took me out of the story.
Okay. That’s a start. Next up: Carrie Fisher and Sienna Miller. Not together. Separately.