REVIEW ROUNDUP: “Tiny Beautiful Things” Opened with a ShowScore of 71

Show-Score | Dec 8, 2016
“Tiny Beautiful Things,” written by Nia  Vardalos and directed by Thomas Kail, opened on December  7, 2016 in New York City. “Tiny Beautiful Things,” written by Nia Vardalos and directed by Thomas Kail, opened on December 7, 2016 in New York City.


11 critics reviewed the show, resulting in a weighted average of 60.

Ben Brantley
The New York Times
ShowScore: 80
"A handkerchief-soaking meditation on pain, loss, hope and forgiveness…'Tiny Beautiful Things’ turns out to provide an ideal catharsis for those suffering from the various deep-dyed blues…This production is not a successful narrative play in any conventional sense. But it works beautifully as a sustained theatrical exercise in empathy…The cast members endow their characters with distinguishing individuality and, more important, a connective emotional transparency."
Zachary Stewart
ShowScore: 65
"An emotional (and slightly sappy) new play that compellingly theatricalizes the act of giving and receiving advice…Unfortunately, as performed by Vardalos, this radical sincerity often comes across as completely false…Vardalos' costars are more successful…While Sugar's sweeter moments are likely to send some viewers into a diabetic coma, 'Tiny Beautiful Things' captures its subject succinctly and effectively."
Frank Scheck
The Hollywood Reporter
ShowScore: 20
"A lackluster theatrical piece...Director Kail provides little theatricality to the static proceedings...Vardalos, looking suitably unglamorous, is appealing as always. But she can’t breathe life into her inherently passive, responsive role...By the time the seemingly interminable proceedings reach their conclusion, you’ll be mentally dictating your own letter to Sugar, asking how to erase the memory of monotonous evenings in the theater like this one."

“Tiny Beautiful Things” was also reviewed by Janice Kaplan of Daily Beast, Steven Ross of Front Mezz Junkies, Robert Hofler of The Wrap, Jesse Green of New York Magazine / Vulture, Joe Dziemianowicz of New York Daily News, Matt Windman of AM New York, Matthew Murray of Talkin' Broadway, and Jonathan Mandell of New York Theater.


The show was also reviewed by 21 Show-Score members, whose collective ShowScore is a weighted average of 77.

Top five adjectives describing the show:
Great acting, Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Disappointing

Bruce 6, ShowScore: 72
See it if…"You want to see beautiful script put together from letters to/from celebrated advice columnist/writer Cheryl Strayed. A fine ensemble." 
Don't see it if…"The form—reader reads letter, columnist responds—results in disconnected short scenes; the advice rendered is pseudo-profound."
Ashowgoer, ShowScore: 72
See it if…"You're a fan of Strayed or enjoy reading advice columns." 
Don't see it if…"You're not interested in watching people act out depressing submissions and responses to an online advice column."
Gil K, ShowScore: 70
See it if…"You are a fan of Dr. Phil, Nia Vardalos and/or self-help books. It's cute and touching, offering good help to the cases. Well-intentioned." 
Don't see it if…"You want a story, especially one with conflict and resolution. This is an episode of Dr. Phil or an enactment of a self-help book." 

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.