The Children
Closed 1h 50m
The Children

The Children NYC Reviews and Tickets

(363 Reviews)
Members say
Great acting, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Intelligent, Slow

About the Show

Two retired nuclear scientists in an isolated cottage by the sea as the world around them crumbles.  Manhattan Theatre Club brings this new drama from London to Broadway with its original cast.

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Member Reviews (363)

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546 Reviews | 1879 Followers
Absorbing, Slow, Great acting, Thought-provoking

See it if Moves very slow, but raises some thoughtful questions in an interesting way about our roles and purpose in life.

Don't see it if You don’t like serious dramas or prefer fast moving stories.

716 Reviews | 219 Followers
Exquisite, Masterful, Slow, Morbid, Profound

See it if Death beckons for nuclear disaster survivors. As the bell tolls, old friends explore the limits of how well they can understand each other.

Don't see it if You don’t like meticulously develeoped characters and a slow moving plot. You don’t want to think about how death affects the living. Read more

716 Reviews | 157 Followers
Absorbing, Ambitious, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Indulgent

See it if you like dystopian stories set in the near future after a nuclear accident, characters whose relationship is slowly revealed,

Don't see it if you don't like discussions of death, dysfunctional families, talk of nuclear incidents, very slow revelation of plot and absurd digressions

650 Reviews | 284 Followers
Asks a profound question: what responsibility does the older generation have for screwing up the world?

See it if addresses the ? in fascinating & ultimately moving post-apocalyptic drama, sparks fly among triangle of gifted actors a la "Virginia Wolf"

Don't see it if play takes too long to introduce the "reveal" that answers the ? and animates the plot; but hang in there, it's worth the wait!

677 Reviews | 190 Followers
Absorbing, Clever, Thought-provoking, Slow, Intelligent

See it if you want to see a finely acted, prototypical British drama about a plausible eco-unfriendly dystopian society & generational responsibility.

Don't see it if a slow-burn, character-driven storyline & dark themes will turn you off from some very smart, if wearisome at times, playwriting. Read more

688 Reviews | 116 Followers
Ambitious, Great acting, Slow, Relevant, Intelligent

See it if Mixing the personal & the topical Kirkwood's climate change drama is both captivating & dull Complex performances help alleviate talkiness

Don't see it if Often progresses at a glacial pace w/echoes of Churchill straining to be heard but eventually hits the mark MacDonald's direction top notch

670 Reviews | 156 Followers
Clever, Ambitious, Resonant, Intelligent, Slow

See it if you're a fan of the British well-made play, especially if you're of retirement age or interested in the challenges facing that generation.

Don't see it if you get bored with a lot of talk, even smart talk, or squirm when a show slows down so much you can hear the gears whirring away. Read more

506 Reviews | 1000 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Edgy, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if you are happy with some great acting re: a 21st Century problem and the value of life. It makes one wonder re: the value of life and Why?

Don't see it if only one (clever) scene.. sound system needs work. not a happy play.

Critic Reviews (48)

The New York Times
December 12th, 2017

“Even though it is completely successful as an eco-thriller, bristling with chills and suspense, denuclearization is not its subject…Its true concerns…become so lofty and yet at the same time so essential that the play is as disturbing to replay in your imagination as it is to see in the first place...The naturalness of Mr. Macdonald’s stage movement in such a confined space is central to the containment of energy that makes the play thrilling.”
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Time Out New York
December 12th, 2017

“Unsettling and provocative...Kirkwood keeps angles of the romantic triangle secondary to a larger concern: the mess that baby boomers have made of the world and what they can do to clean it up...Behind the subtleties of its direction and acting, 'The Children’s' central question is blunt: What does it mean to be responsible?"
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New York Magazine / Vulture
December 12th, 2017

“A play about responsibility and guilt, reparation and redemption. It’s also a British play, so these heavy matters are handled lightly, wryly, approached from the side until circumstances absolutely demand a head-on confrontation...Kirkwood plays a clever and ultimately heartbreaking game with the complex relationships among these three old friends...There’s the sense of three expert players staying in close harmony, at first reserved, eventually released.”
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The Hollywood Reporter
December 12th, 2017

"‘The Children’ squanders its provocative premise with dull execution. There are powerful moments in the second half once the main situation has been established…But for all the moments that resonate there are others that feel forced...The three veteran British performers deliver impeccable work...But the actors' fine efforts are not enough to fully breathe life into this willfully slow-paced, sluggish work, which treats minor domestic issues and the future of the planet with equal gravity.“
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Entertainment Weekly
December 12th, 2017

“What at first seemed like an intimate domestic meditation on the post-apocalyptic emerges, much more intriguingly, as a nuanced, humane, yet scathing indictment of the Baby Boomers...Director James MacDonald tightens the atmosphere, tracing the shift in mood from an ordinary afternoon to a seismic evening with grace...The playwright has a gift for realism, with actors to match it, but tests the limits of its effectiveness as she gets exceedingly blunt with theme."
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December 14th, 2017

"Its sterling cast intact, Kirkwood’s harrowing play exposes us to the drab lives and dark pasts of three nuclear physicists...Director James Macdonald does a masterful job of deepening and darkening the sense of menace that haunts this strange play...So much depends on the actors to hold off our impatience. Luckily, these mesmerizing performers could keep us enthralled through any of the cataclysmic events alluded to in the play."
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The Wall Street Journal
December 14th, 2017

"A gently probing and eccentrically unsettling play...This play is best when it skillfully keeps its questions hovering in the air, letting none settle to earth...The direction by James Macdonald creates a taut but playful psychological drama that lets nothing become pedantic, following the text’s lead and dissolving most solemnity with glints of wit...At the same time, there was something unsatisfying here. Perhaps it was the sense that there really was meant to be, in the end, a takeaway."
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New York Daily News
December 12th, 2017

“A slow-moving but ultimately thought-provoking and haunting drama about legacies...Patience is required for this 110-minute one-act, but there are payoffs...Buether’s sets and costumes, Mumford’s lighting and projections and Pappenheim’s sound design enrich the atmosphere. The three actors deliver lived-in, persuasive performances. Director Macdonald’s staging exerts an insistent tug and nudges out flecks of humor in the dark subject.”
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