Fifty Words

  • Date:
    October 1, 2008

    What the press had to say.....

    "Bruising domestic drama." & "I don�t know how engrossing I would have found this protracted apache dance if it hadn�t been brought to such authentic and unsparing life by Mr. Butz, Ms. Marvel and Mr. Pendleton."
    Ben Brantley
    New York Times

    "You could call the performance a roller coaster, but that suggests an exhilarating experience. This is a roller jerker, lurching from one emotion to the next over the course of 95 minutes, doubling back, negating what's just been said or done. If it's meant to be a slice of realism, a smog of artificiality constantly hangs over the play. "
    Joe Dziemianowicz
    New York Daily News

    "Under Austin Pendleton's sturdy direction, both actors deliver fiercely passionate and highly physical performances that go a long way toward overcoming the writing's rough patches"
    Frank Scheck
    New York Post

    "Yet for all of the conversational ease of Weller's dialogue, the play's situation and development look contrived. Perhaps worse, the characters -- particularly the madly ambivalent Janine -- are basically dreary people whom viewers are unlikely to root for."
    Michael Sommers

    "We cannot help recalling how good Michael Weller's youthful plays of the '70s were, as we sadly watch the second of his late middle-age ones come to grief." & "Two talented and experienced actors, Norbert Leo Butz and Elizabeth Marvel are trapped in this frenetic contraption, with Austin Pendleton's directorial skills further sacrificed on the altar of whatever Moloch devours hapless literary brainchildren."
    John Simon

    "By turns truthful, bittersweet, and compelling, it's also flat, unsurprising, and not theatrical."
    Gwen Orel
    Back Stage

    "Michael Weller's blistering, highly theatrical examination of a husband and wife seeking to sort out and make sense of their life together. That theatricality is heightened by the casting of Norbert Leo Butz and Elizabeth Marvel as the vituperative partners. They are a pair of superb actors willing to take intense emotional and physical leaps into scary, take-no-prisoners territory."
    Michael Kuchwara
    Associated Press

    "Austin Pendleton's taut production for MCC referees gladiatorial performances from Norbert Leo Butz and Elizabeth Marvel that make it impossible to look away."
    David Rooney