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Skylight

Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Intelligent, Great writing, Thought-provoking
83
Critics
82
31 reviews
Members
84
46 reviews
 

Following rave reviews in London, David Hare's drama about an amorous and unstable reunion of two former lovers comes to Broadway, starring Academy Award nominee Carey Mulligan and Bill Nighy.

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On a bitterly cold London evening, schoolteacher Kyra Hollis (Carey Mulligan) receives an unexpected visit from her one-time boss and former lover, Tom Sergeant (Bill Nighy), a successful and charismatic restaurateur. Kyra had walked out on Tom years earlier, when Tom's wife discovered their relationship. Now, Tom's wife is dead and he has returned to settle unfinished business. As the evening progresses, the two attempt to rekindle their once passionate relationship, only to find themselves locked in a dangerous battle of opposing ideologies and mutual desires.

 

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Reviews (77)

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
82
Avg Score

90
The New York Times

"As you watch Ms. Mulligan and Mr. Nighy move magnetically toward and away from each other in Stephen Daldry’s exquisitely balanced London-born production, you can’t help thinking that on some profound level these two were made to be together...Tear-stained stories of impossible love have been a staple of theater for centuries. And Mr. Hare’s 1995 drama, his tightest and quite possibly his best, delivers big on the rueful pleasures of that genre." Full Review

35
Theatermania

"Hare offers some surprisingly prescient observations and stinging barbs, but they've been carefully insulated in heaps of down stuffing so as not to make the audience too uncomfortable. Director Stephen Daldry's lackluster production, featuring unremarkable performances from the two lead actors, does little to change that. Unfortunately, Skylight, by design, is a boring play...the result is about as thrilling as watching pasta boil." Full Review

60
New York Post

"Watching a couple duke it out works only if you also understand what drew them to each other in the first place. But in the new Broadway revival of David Hare’s “Skylight,” the lovers don’t share much, either in love or war...The lack of sexual chemistry between them makes you wonder why Kyra bothers to put up with Tom." Full Review

90
Variety

"The fierce pas de deux of love and loss and anguish executed by Carey Mulligan and Bill Nighy in “Skylight” leaves you breathless — and wondering how they can sustain this level of emotional intensity throughout the show’s 13-week Broadway run." Full Review

90
Time Out New York

"Throughout, Hare demands to know how are we treating one another—as humans or objects? This might sound like preaching or, worse, allegory—but Hare’s psychological acuity and love of articulate blusterers is too strong for that: He combines the dialectical relish of Shaw, the cozy-sweater Englishness of Rattigan and the seething outrage of Osborne. All of which means that the material is red meat to actors as fearless and deep-diving as Mulligan and Nighy." Full Review

80
The Guardian (UK)

"I loved this play madly when I read it in college, not too long after it debuted. I thought it romantic and tragic and true. In this revival, directed with sensitivity and some unnecessarily cinematic flair by Stephen Daldry, I can now see the working of Hare’s hand more than I’d like, particularly in some of the more impassioned, politically minded monologues." Full Review

95
The Huffington Post

"Broadway's April Madness starts tonight, with 14 plays and musicals racing to open over the next twenty-two days...We cannot at this point state that the Stephen Daldry revival of "Skylight" will be the finest of the group, no, but it is likely to be near the top of the list. This is a smashingly good production of what might be David Hare's finest play, with two of the season's most striking performances from Bill Nighy and Carey Mulligan." Full Review

90
New York Magazine / Vulture

"Here they are in David Hare’s "Skylight", a monkey and a moonbeam, somehow bringing the same story to thrilling life. Nighy is the monkey, or perhaps better to call him a Catherine wheel of tics and poses and stutters and quirks. Mulligan creates the illusion of character with no affectations at all. She is as rivetingly, radically transparent as he is hilariously baroque, but in the end that’s only fitting; the play, one of Hare’s best, is about the gap between what’s reconcilable and what... Full Review

65
The Wall Street Journal

"Fine though “Skylight” is, this high-profile revival is disappointing...Nor do Mr. Nighy and Ms. Mulligan emit the scent of mutual desire without which “Skylight” makes no sense: They act like father and daughter, not unhappy lovers. Ms. Mulligan pulls the final grade up to a B-double-minus, but unless you’re a fan of hers, don’t bother." Full Review

85
The Hollywood Reporter

"The excellence of the production goes a long way toward finding balance in the play. While it has a terrific first act, Skylight ultimately works better as a complex relationship postmortem than as an issues debate about class, privilege and social conscience. But even when Hare stops inferring his point and starts using his characters as mouthpieces, this is riveting stuff, its commentary on the wealth divide as relevant now as it was in the immediate post-Thatcher years." Full Review

65
New York Daily News

"The Bolognese sauce that simmers on a working stove in “Skylight” looks good enough to eat, but this much-admired play about exes who try to reheat their passion isn’t always so palatable...As romances go, David Hare’s mid-1990s drama of a May-December affair stirs the brain with its still-topical thoughts on class divides and politics as well as how well opposites ultimately attract. The heart, meanwhile, is all but bypassed." Full Review

100
Deadline

"In a season marked by alpha stars in beta plays, Nighy and co-star Carey Mulligan have a brilliant vehicle worthy of their complementary talents. Piloted with exceptional sensitivity by Stephen Daldry and beautifully designed, this revival is as fine as the original — while being utterly different in texture, tone and impact. The result is riveting, as absorbing a drama as can be seen anywhere this season...Skylight is a keeper and this revival is one for the ages." Full Review

85
The Wrap

"When it comes to playing sufferers and pricks, you can’t do much better than Mulligan and Nighy. It is brilliant typecasting and the play sparkles with wit and verve and even a little pathos." Full Review

85
WNBC

"The sharp writing has Kyra both peeling away Tom’s many layers, and peeling onions -- the actress cooks spaghetti Bolognese during the first act, and the theater fills with the tangy smell of the sauce. Mulligan slices and dices as she deploys Hare’s complex dialogue...Nighy, reprising a role he first played in 1997, is excellent; full of that nervous energy that makes him so much fun to watch." Full Review

95
The Associated Press

"Mulligan, a spectacular Bill Nighy, the marvelous newcomer Matthew Beard and the director Stephen Daldry make alchemy onstage with their own red-hot talent. Funny, poignant and insightful, the West End transfer "Skylight" is a full meal in a place where appetizers often pass as entrees." Full Review

95
NY1

"There is nothing quite like great acting to re-kindle one’s love affair with the theatre. That’s most certainly the case with “Skylight,” which has the added pleasure of playwright David Hare’s heart-rending eloquence. When a show is loaded with this much talent, it does not take much to captivate...Director Stephen Daldry exploits every subtle clue in the writing to stirring effect. Moment to moment, this “Skylight” is truly illuminating." Full Review

95
The Washington Post

"It is the charged mixture of mystery and tension and sense of unfinished business between them that most exquisitely animates “Skylight,” David Hare’s movingly absorbing story of Kyra and Tom and the compassion and comprehension gaps that leave their intense connection in tatters. That Tom is played by Bill Nighy and Kyra by Carey Mulligan adds to the allure of “Skylight,” which opened as one of the season’s highest-caliber dramatic events." Full Review

90
Towleroad

"Though the play’s gender politics show some signs of age 20 years on, Daldry’s production makes the drama and its many social questions feel vital and urgent...Hare and Daldry have a visual language all their own, and it’s as stunning as it is visceral. Seeing this many gifted artists come together is rare, and the results are divine." Full Review

90
USA Today

"Can two people with opposing world views be soul mates? That's one vexing question posed by David Hare's deceptively intimate, intricate "Skylight"...in this production, directed with compassion and brutal clarity by Stephen Daldry, both emerge as flawed, sympathetic, believable human beings...Whether Kyra and Tom can reconcile or not, this "Skylight" assures us, both will endure — as will the troubled, contradictory world around them." Full Review

45
New Jersey Newsroom

"A pot of spaghetti is cooked onstage in “Skylight,” but the food for thought that British playwright David Hare serves up in his 1995 quasi-romantic drama is not especially substantial nor spicy. Hare’s dialogue is smoothly written, yet his play makes for a rather talky, at times tedious two hours or so as Tom and Kyra alternate between rueful recollections of their relationship and sporadic explosions over their present states of mind." Full Review

95
Entertainment Weekly

"The waft of vegetable aromatics infusing a homemade Bolognese isn’t the only thing that will fully arouse your senses in the magnificent revival of David Hare’s Skylight. This relationship drama is the kind of (mostly) two-hander that has the ability to turn into either a soap opera or a boulevard comedy in the wrong hands. Under the expert guidance of director Stephen Daldry and its luminous, impassioned stars, the production becomes–to get back to the food–nothing short of a five-star meal." Full Review

80
NJ.com

"In the thought-provoking, insightful "Skylight" - now on Broadway in a West End transfer starring Carey Mulligan and Bill Nighy - playwright David Hare explores the way we forge our experiences into the stories we tell about ourselves, and how those narratives can break down or blossom when exposed to another point of view." Full Review

90
Daily Beast

""Skylight" isn’t some exhausting O’Neill-like epic, but it is an intense experience. It picks you up and hurls you along for two hours, and then resolves with such dramatic rightness that you walk out completely satisfied and at the same time all shook up." Full Review

100
The New York Times

for a previous production "The sometimes anguished, sometimes heart-shatteringly funny weighing of their inner and outer worlds translates into two impeccably chiseled hours onstage...One of the most intelligently sentimental love stories of our time...a nigh perfect production. Be ready to cry." Full Review

95
The Guardian (UK)

for a previous production "A play in which politics and passion are so tightly intertwined as to be inseparable; Everything about this production is finely judged...Hare's play hits you straight between the eyes with its mixture of private pain and public rage at our profoundly polarised society." Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
84
Avg Score

60
Disappointing, Overrated, Well acted, Problematic script, Odoriferous (dinner's cooking)

See it if you like Hare. The script is ludicrous. It's ok to have the affair as long as the wife doesn't know...really? Too many plot holes.

Don't see it if you're expecting the best of Nighy. His schtick was distracting. Mulligan fared better. I'm sick of old men getting young beautiful women.

Also Very talky, which kills the chemistry. I found Mulligan's moral high g... Read more Read less

90
Dizzying, Great acting, Intense, Thought-provoking, Great writing

See it if you're a fan of the lead actors, enjoy serious/weighty plays, are intrigued by relationships in turmoil

Don't see it if you want something lighthearted and pain-free

87
Great acting, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Profound, Great writing

See it if you want a masterclass in acting from these brilliant performers. Also, a superb acting feat. Simple and lovely.

Don't see it if plays bore you. Especially small cast plays.

83
Great acting, Intelligent, Masterful, Great writing

See it if you want to see masterful acting and writing in a multi award winning show

Don't see it if you need a lot of action on stage. This is a play about telling a story of lost love.

78
Great acting, Slow, Dated, Great staging

See it if you appreciate a well-crafted story with great acting

Don't see it if you are looking for flash / you are uncomfortable with the May/Decemberest of inappropriate relationships.

88
Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Refreshing, Great writing

See it if For the cast and writing. I love Nighy and Mulligan, but Matthew Beard has proven to be someone new to watch for. Well rounded characters.

Don't see it if You're made uncomfortable by their relationship. You're looking for something lighter.

58
Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Overrated, Great staging, Nice set

See it if The first scene with Matthew Beard was excellent. He's an impressive young actor. Bill Nighy was a bundle of distracting tics.

Don't see it if You don't want to listen to an annoying somewhat unpleasant couple argue about old times.

84
Great acting, Intelligent, Romantic, Slow

See it if You want to see two incredibly talented stage actors give their all.

Don't see it if You're looking for a profound play with a lot of action.

90
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Riveting, Great writing

See it if You enjoy great acting, great writing and a compelling story about the effects of a misguided relationship.

Don't see it if A story concerning a much older man and a younger woman trying to make sense of a complicated previous relationship would turn you off.

90
Funny, Original, Great acting, Intelligent, Great writing

See it if you want an intelligent story about relationships & enjoy quick, fast paced, & witty dialogue. It's also outstanding writing & acting.

Don't see it if You dislike the topics of money or class, you're looking for a spectacle, or dislike monologues.

97
Absorbing, Exquisite, Great acting, Intense, Masterful

See it if you enjoy superb theater

Don't see it if .......................

85
Great acting, Intense, Overrated, Slow, Entertaining

See it if classic and proper stage play

Don't see it if you don't like classic plays

51
Boring, Great acting, Slow, Ok, Not great

See it if You like slower paced character driven pieces where not a lot really happens but there is lots of talking.

Don't see it if You have a short attention span or dislike slow paced shows.

80
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Great writing, Slow

See it if you like very slow paced psychological drama. Great actors!

Don't see it if you don't like very slow paced psychological drama.

82
Great acting, Intelligent, Intense, Refreshing, Resonant

See it if you want a fascinating political discourse disguised as a romantic drama in a subtly directed piece with a luminous Carey Mulligan.

Don't see it if discussions of money, class and society are not of your interests.

75
Great acting, Pretentious, Interesting, Unsurprising

See it if You are a Cary Mulligan/Bill Nighy fan and enjoy talky plays that don't have much action

Don't see it if you don't feel like paying a LOT for a play that would be better suited to a smaller off-Broadway setting

91
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Intense, Thought-provoking

See it if You want to see emotions and beautiful acting.

Don't see it if You are looking for something upbeat.

90
Absorbing, Great acting, Intense, Masterful

See it if you adore serious intense drama with great acting

Don't see it if you're hoping to see humour or comedy

65
Edgy, Intense, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Slow

See it if Good writing, profound monologues

Don't see it if Slow moving, discourse between the two becomes annoying at times.

93
Great acting, Intelligent, Great writing

See it if You enjoy great acting. The script is so well written.

Don't see it if Is a two person show, essentially. A lot of talking.

87
Funny, Great acting, Intelligent, Riveting, Entertaining

See it if You want to see powerful acting and great chemistry onstage.

Don't see it if You don't like plays.

95
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Wordy

See it if you like intelligent, dialogue-driven plays and the smell of spaghetti bolognese.

Don't see it if you don't like having to pay a lot of attention to the dialogue in order to understand what's going on. And don't see it if you're hungry!

100
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent

See it if you're interested in excellent acting performances and realism.

Don't see it if you're looking for a high-energy, big and bold production.

90
Absorbing, Ambitious, Clever, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if you love these two actors, they drive the story in their shoulders.

Don't see it if you don't like a brilliant show.

60
Clever, Great acting, Confusing

See it if you're into 'kitchen sink dramas' (literally). And if you enjoy watching complicated people deal with their complicated relationship.

Don't see it if you have strong feelings about actors having chemistry. Or if you want an exciting, daring, jazz-hands-infused show.