REVIEW ROUNDUP: “Office Hour” Opened with a ShowScore of 73

Show-Score | Nov 9, 2017
“Office Hour," written by Julia Cho and directed by Neel Keller opened on November  8, 2017 in New York City. “Office Hour," written by Julia Cho and directed by Neel Keller opened on November 8, 2017 in New York City.

CRITICS REVIEWS

11 critics reviewed the show, resulting in a weighted average of 59.

Jesse Green
The New York Times
ShowScore: 60
“If you remove from the story the threat of violence and its fulfillment, there’s very little story left...Cho tries to finesse this structural problem by introducing a meta-theatrical game of three-card monte...It’s hard to pay attention either way, because so many of the vignettes end in varieties of violence..Technically, the production is extremely skillful — you might even say cunning — at producing that response...But the question remains: effective to what end?"

Zachary Stewart
Theatermania
ShowScore: 65
“Disappointingly, ‘Office Hour’ begins to resemble a therapy session...Everyone onstage has a good cry and we tear up a bit from sheer boredom. It feels like an easy way out...We are briefly jolted to attention by a sequence of rapid-fire scenes imagining all the horrible ways a shooting could happen...Then something incredible happens: We get used to it...Whether by design or not, our reaction to what should be a traumatizing scene is the most disturbing revelation of the play."
Frank Scheck
The Hollywood Reporter
ShowScore: 65
“The dialogue too often feels contrived and artificial, designed to make sociological points rather than convey three-dimensional characters...The playwright indulges too often in the sort of narrative fake-outs that are certainly shocking but eventually prove wearisome in their repetitiveness. ‘Office Hour’ is most incisive in its quieter, subtler moments...May not tell us anything we don't already know...But it certainly makes you feel like you've been in the presence of one.”

“Office Hour” was also reviewed by James Wilson of Talkin' Broadway, Sara Holdren of New York Magazine / Vulture, Tami Shaloum of Stage Buddy, Sandi Durell of Theater Pizzazz, Robert Hofler of The Wrap, Elyse Sommer of CurtainUp, Jonathan Mandell of New York Theater, and Helen Shaw of Time Out New York.

MEMBER REVIEWS

The show was also reviewed by 66 Show-Score members, whose collective ShowScore is a weighted average of 76.

Top five adjectives describing the show:
Intense, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Relevant, Absorbing

Show-Sam, ShowScore: 95
See it if…
"You want to be challenged in how you understand the intersection of race, ethnicity and mental health. America needs this play."
Don't see it if…"You’re seeking a light night of theater to turn off your brain, that doesn’t involve deep and critical thinking."
Buzzy, ShowScore: 50
See it if…
"You are interested in a portrait of a troubled and potentially violent college student in an unbelievable encounter with a fearless teacher."
Don't see it if…"If you expect some enlightenment about dealing with potentially violent young people or any other aspect such situations."
dianefe, ShowScore: 65
See it if…
"You think plays that confront violence, mental health, and racism are important."
Don't see it if…"You expect believable dialogue and a fresh take on important topics. Play started with promise and had some great ideas but was unsatisfying."
See the Show Page with all critic and member reviews.

Note: The ShowScore displayed above is current as of right now, and may be different from the ShowScore when the article was published.



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