By David Auburn
Directed by Daniel Sullivan
Manhattan Theatre Club
NY City Center Stage I
The newest from playwright David Auburn (Pulitzer Prize-winning Proof and The Columnist) and director Daniel Sullivan, starring Oscar nominee John Hawkes ("The Sessions, "Winter’s Bone") and Tracie Thoms (Rent, TV's “Cold Case.”). Veronica (Thomas) rents a shabby lake cabin (scenic design by J. Michael Griggs, who gets kudos for a slick scenery change trick) for a vacation with her kids, but property owner Hogan (Hawkes) doesn't follow through on work he promised to complete around the house. In fact, he sort of doesn't really vacate the place since he has no place to go except for his truck. Things get even more uncomfortable when it appears that Hogan may have let the property without his brother and sister-in-law's blessing and Veronica might not be willing to pay the balance of her rental fee, especially since she just lost her job under difficult circumstances. An unusual friendship grows between the two adults who both are lost in their own ways and trying to find acceptance.
What are the Highlights?
Good performances and tight direction.
What Are the Lowlights?
Much of the premise is unlikely. Given the less-than-cozy state of the cabin, what's the likelihood that a mom, who goes out of her way to check the place out in person, would book the place, especially when she has looked at other rentals that are nicer? What's the likelihood that she would stay when repairs haven't been made and the heat doesn't work? What is the likelihood that she would allow Hogan to keep showing up, particularly when she discovers he ha been sleeping in his truck on the property and at one point when he shows up drunk. What's the likelihood that these two would end up being friends? Perhaps that last question is the one that fuels the play -- an interesting study of how to people from different backgrounds and lifestyles can both feel lost and find something in common despite circumstances. The rest of the questions are answered by "if not, there would be no play."
More Information:Design team includes: Jess Goldstein (costume design), Robert Perry (lighting design), and Fitz Patton (original music & sound design).
Closing Dec. 21. http://www.manhattantheatreclub.com/2014-15-season/
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-- God's name use din vain