jjohnzi

Manhattan | 50-64 | Male
About:  Just a guy who likes theater!
Reviews (41)
80
Great staging, Must see, Dizzying

See it if you like jukebox musicals. This one is on steroids. The production is terrific and it works it's magic with the first song and just keeps on

Don't see it if you want original songs sung in meaningful ways. That's not what this is about. It's pure entertainment. Not a thought will be provoked

Also I'm still in awe at the scale of this production. Every cent of that $... Read more Read less

95
Octet
Midtown W
Clever, Great singing, Thought-provoking

See it if you like experimental theatrical experiences. This is a very entertaining oddball piece of work. Terrific singing, provocative writing. Go!

Don't see it if you need a musical to have an orchestra or if you can't deal with the occult or addiction as subject matter. It's a plain Jane production.

90
During previews
Dated, Romantic, Great singing, Delightful, Exquisite

See it if you want to see a top notch production of an old chestnut. You won’t find a more enthusiastic cast. Kelli O’Hara is stellar. What a voice!

Don't see it if you don’t like revivals of old fashioned musicals or if you need a rap bridge in every song you listen to. Hamilton it isn’t (thank God).

Also This is a standard, high-quality Roundabout musical revival. Gloriousl... Read more Read less

70
During previews
Daddy
Midtown W
Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Intense

See it if if you like the work of emerging young playwrights who haven’t yet learned about judicious editing of their works. Could trim at least 1 hr!

Don't see it if if you’re bothered by gay-themed plays with plenty of nudity of both young & middle aged men or if you’re not down for a nearly 3 hr sit.

Also I’m glad I saw it but it’s overly ambitious and tries too hard to pack... Read more Read less

65
Disappointing, Indulgent, Insipid, Overrated

See it if you like the extremely off beat. It’s not really theater. More of a performance art piece.

Don't see it if you want to be entertained. It took 5 minutes to get the jist of everything and forever to get to the end. I don’t share her passion for it

60
During previews
Epic, Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Indulgent

See it if you want to revisit a strange and difficult time in American history via a big theatrical production. Some stunning stagecraft too

Don't see it if you don’t have patience to sit for 8 hours of theater or if you’re not a Nathan Lane fan. He sounds more like Ralph Kramden with every show

Also Why is no one writing about the awful, blasting horror film music that... Read more Read less

90
Absorbing, Great acting, Great staging, Great writing, Masterful

See it if you enjoy theater that confronts social issues head on. It's really great & very timely.

Don't see it if you voted for Donald Trump or you think black lives don't matter. You might find this a difficult sit.

Also I saw the original production on Broadway & the play still packs a pun... Read more Read less

80
Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if you've liked any of Richard Nelson's other plays or you like intimate dramas.

Don't see it if you're expecting DRAMA with a capital 'D'

65
Falsettos
Midtown W
Great singing, Quirky, Confusing

See it if if you like Stephanie J Block. She almost steals the show. A brilliant, effortless performance.

Don't see it if you don't like small off B'way shows that should have remained there.

Also The first act doesn't add up to much and this production further empha... Read more Read less

50
During previews
Heisenberg
Midtown W
Overrated, Dull, Banal, Disappointing, Insipid

See it if you like two character plays that run under 100 minutes.

Don't see it if you have any expectations that this slight story will be anything other than that. It gets lost in such a big theater.

Also DO NOT SIT IN THE FRONT ROW. The stage overhangs into your lap and is ... Read more Read less

88
Small Mouth Sounds
Midtown W
Clever, Entertaining, Thought-provoking

See it if you've ever gone on a silent retreat, you're looking for something off beat, you like Quincy Tyler Bernstein (she's great in this!)

Don't see it if you don't like shows involving spirituality, you prefer conventional story telling, you are upset by male nudity in any way.

20
Engagements
Upper W Side
Excruciating, Slow, Banal

See it if you miss Sex & the City themes & want to see them on stage

Don't see it if you love original, engaging theater. Save for a few cute young actors, this thing is TERRIBLE

75
Blackbird
Midtown W
Absorbing, Great acting, Intense

See it if you like brief, intense, two character pieces about painful pasts done by great actors who are willing to go deep night after night

Don't see it if you have a history of sexual abuse. It might be too painful for you to see the female character's struggle to get her bearings in the world

80
During previews
The Crucible
Midtown W
Absorbing, Great acting, Intense

See it if you're an Ivo fan & you're ok with anachronistic staging

Don't see it if you're a staging should reflect time time of the story purist & don't like quiet, super-heavy drama

50
The Royale
Upper W Side
Disappointing, Banal, Cliched

See it if you like immersive style theater, you like racial-themed works, you enjoy boxing stories.

Don't see it if you like anything by August Wilson, you're expecting something substantial or you're voting for Drumpf

70
Once Upon a Mattress
Lower E Side
Entertaining, Funny, Dated, Quirky, Fluffy

See it if you're a die-hard Lipsinka/Jackie Hoffman fan & enjoy campy updates of old warhorse musicals.

Don't see it if you saw Carol Burnett play Winifred. No way to match that performance. Also if you expect non-traditional color blind casting. Not here.

80
Incident at Vichy
Midtown W
Absorbing, Profound, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Intense

See it if you're an Arthur Miller fan and don't mind a hard look at man's inhumanity to man & the sacrifice it takes to change the status quo.

Don't see it if you've had your share of WWII/Holocaust stories or are offended by harsh dramatizations of what went on back then.

70
During previews
Entertaining, Great singing, Resonant

See it if You love to hear great singers blow the roof off the place and you like the book &/or movie.

Don't see it if You don't engage with stories of black female empowerment or don't enjoy gospel-tinged fare.

100
Clever, Hilarious, Quirky

See it if you want to see the best that Broadway has to offer. Funniest, cleverest yet still ends on a hopeful note, just like a good musical should.

Don't see it if you're offended by any skewering of religious belief systems, don't like South Park or don't like youthful irreverence in general

95
Clever, Edgy, Absorbing

See it if You want to see a truly fresh take on father/daughter relationships and love solid, original songs. Great singing too.

Don't see it if You dislike theater in the round, hate non-linear storytelling or are in any way bothered by a gay woman's coming of age tale.

80
For a previous production
Waitress (NYC)
Midtown W
Entertaining, Delightful, Funny

See it if You're a Jessie Mueller fan & also like the tunes of Sara Bareillis. Both shine brightly.

Don't see it if You don't like musicals that inadvertently reference popular sitcoms (aka 'Alice').

85
Douglas
Gramercy
Edgy, Thought-provoking, Ambitious, Hilarious, Clever

See it if you're already a fan, you're ok with a bracing dose of lesbian anger, you're ok with comics taking on serious stuff

Don't see it if you're offended by LGBT themes, if you don't like comedy that makes you think, you're part of the patriarchy that can't take a joke

Also It's a much lighter show than Nanette was but no less divisive (see Th... Read more Read less

55
Ambitious, Overrated, Slow

See it if you like Brooklynized versions of things. Good performers try so hard to be authentic hicks only to present as dull, self-absorbed hipsters.

Don't see it if you’re not a Brooklyn hipster. You won’t like it.

Also Very disappointed. They should have gone all the way and gotten rid of... Read more Read less

48
Marys Seacole
Upper W Side
Indulgent, Overrated, Confusing

See it if if you’re a fan of ‘womyns’ experimental theater that traffics in the stereotypical.

Don't see it if you like your theatre to answer a ‘theatrical question’. No answers here. Just rage and chaos.

Also Not sure I get the rave reviews. To me it’s a misdirected mess in seri... Read more Read less

25
During previews
Banal, Disappointing, Excruciating, Indulgent, Overwrought

See it if You’re early in 12 Step Recovery. Lois Smith has a few lovely moments. The ASL stuff didn’t add a thing. The super-titles were enough.

Don't see it if You can’t tolerate the cliches of 12 Step Recovery. It almost plays like a PSA or movie-of-the-week for ‘letting go & letting God’.

Also I had high hopes for this play considering the prospect of watching de... Read more Read less

75
During previews
Lobby Hero
Midtown W
Clever, Edgy, Quirky, Thought-provoking

See it if you’re a Lonnergan fan or if you like bigger productions of small plays

Don't see it if you’re greater than 5’9”. The seats are TERRIBLE. Also if you’re looking for big emotional conflicts and payoffs this might not be for you

95
During previews
Delightful, Relevant, Refreshing, Must see

See it if you like non-traditional, socially relevant musicals, you can keep up with a very fast pace and very few actors playing many roles

Don't see it if 9/11 haunts you in difficult ways, you don't like Celtic-flavored music or you don't believe in the goodness of mankind

Also This is almost a perfect little gem. Wasn't sure it would translate to... Read more Read less

65
During previews
This Day Forward
Gramercy
Insipid, Disappointing, Nice set

See it if you want to add it to the list of Nicky Silver 'messed-up mom' plays you've already seen. Really no other reason to go. Nice set though.

Don't see it if you don't have mom issues and you don't care to see yet another play about 'this is how our parents mess us up'.

Also This play is under-written & somewhat pointless. Who is this play writ... Read more Read less

60
During previews
Sweet Charity
Midtown W
Dated, Slow, Insipid, Banal

See it if you're a Sutton Foster fan or you like stripped-to-the-bones renditions of shows that were at one time given big productions

Don't see it if you like musicals with emotional depth

Also This is a bare-bones production & I just don't think there's enough co... Read more Read less

49
During previews
Plenty
East Village
Confusing, Disappointing, Slow

See it if you have no other options and you can get in for free. Many people left at the intermission. That says it all.

Don't see it if you saw any of the earlier productions with Kate Nelligan. This production doesn't come close.

Also I agree that the direction is tanking this production. It's hard to te... Read more Read less

95
Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Great acting

See it if you're a Richard Nelson fan or if you're curious to see superlative ensemble acting. A really wonderful experience. It's quiet & deep.

Don't see it if you're bored by the thought of watching people sitting around preparing food & talking or you need big, explosive drama to satisfy you.

95
For a previous production
Oslo (Broadway)
Upper W Side
Absorbing, Must see, Intelligent

See it if you like political dramas that make you think AND make you feel. Very unexpectedly moving production. Jefferson Mays is top notch.

Don't see it if you hate political dramas, think you have the Arab-Israeli conflict all figured out or don't like three hour plays.

95
Thought-provoking, Refreshing, Must see

See it if you like shows about autistic main characters

Don't see it if if you don't like shows based on novels

65
Original, Fluffy, Accessible

See it if you want to see a crystal clear performance of a Shakespeare play and you like non-traditional adaptations & casting. Janet McTeer fan? GO

Don't see it if if you're at all bothered by directorial liberties taken that seem indulgent or if the thought of Donald Trump being involved upsets you

50
Red Speedo
East Village
Disappointing, Overrated, Cliched

See it if you like short plays, you like sports themed dramas, you're interested in morality plays

Don't see it if you're expecting something substantial, you dislike Mamet & his pretenders, you don't like plays where the set overwhelms the drama

80
Hir
Midtown W
Great acting, Hilarious, Intelligent, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if you like to have your biases challenged by theatrical events. Also if you want to see the funniest 30 minutes of theater on stage right now.

Don't see it if you have no interest in a fractured look at female empowerment & gender issues. It's not for everyone.

70
Sylvia
Midtown W
Clever, Entertaining, Fluffy, Quirky, Funny

See it if you're a dog lover & appreciate Annaleigh Ashford

Don't see it if you can't stand Matthew Broderick

65
Dada Woof Papa Hot
Upper W Side
Entertaining, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Overrated, Indulgent

See it if you're gay & you'd enjoy seeing an up-to-the-minute depiction of modern gay life, kids & all

Don't see it if you might not like modern gay marriage themes, male nudity, sex addiction and white privilege all in one play

85
Sleep No More
Chelsea
Quirky, Original, Intense

See it if you like experimental theater & don't mind being part of the production and the audience simultaneously.

Don't see it if you don't like to walk a lot, are claustrophobic or don't like haunted houses. I saw it twice because I had to leave early the first time.

90
Delightful, Enchanting, Romantic

See it if You like Kelli O'Hara and are in the mood for an old fashioned musical brought to glorious life.

Don't see it if You're tired of revivals

60
Hamilton (NYC)
Midtown W
Disappointing, Banal, Ambitious

See it if You like the droning monotony of hip hop & Lin Manuel Miranda's minimal acting talent & maximum ego on display.

Don't see it if You're expecting a transformative theatrical experience. It isn't worth it unless you get the $10 tickets. Doesn't live up to the hype.