Marilyn Stasio

Marilyn Stasio is a critic with Variety. This account has been auto-generated, and does not indicate that this person is an active member of Show-Score.com. That said, if you "follow" this member, you will automatically be updated whenever s/he writes a new review.

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Reviews (261)
Preview swal1
80
Variety

"The writing in these separate monologues is excellent, as are the solo performances by Tom Sturridge and Jake Gyllenhaal. But this is no show to see on a first date...There’s pleasure to be had at the sound of pretty prose, and it’s a joy to watch two fine actors perform in flawless character. But it might take a couple of stiff drinks to get the ashen taste of death out of your mouth." Full Review

Preview choirboy
85
Variety

“Sweetly exuberant...The play transfers nicely, under the surefooted direction of Trip Cullman...The new venue also gives the show’s sensational young lead, Jeremy Pope, more room to spread his wings and soar...Pharus is a strange and wonderful character with the courage to be his own exceptional self...The music is joyous...The songs follow an arc from familiar hymns sung in strict choral harmony to less formal, but meaningful solos. Everyone gets his moment." Full Review

Preview poster
85
Variety

"Chayefsky’s diatribe, which played as satire almost a half-century ago, takes on fresh fury in a sizzling stage production, directed by Ivo Van Hove, that feels less satiric but more urgent — and frightening — in today’s times...The depth of Chayefsky’s cynicism is so breathtaking, so full of existential despair that it makes today’s critical pundits look like weepy whiners. Although Cranston never pushes Beale over the edge into madness, he brilliantly nudges him to the outer limits of ang... Full Review

Preview ame p113 300x450
75
Variety

"Director Kenny Leon has assembled a solid creative workforce...It’s hard to take your eyes off Washington’s Kendra, whose anguish seems to have taken over her entire body...Playwright Demos-Brown is a clever phrase-maker, and he delights in using language that vividly illustrates the social and educational gulf between Larkin and Kendra...A play that’s probably a bit too small for Broadway and a bit too narrow to throw a long shadow, but still manages to get under your skin." Full Review

Preview waverly
80
Variety

"So the poignancy is a bit heavy-handed, even under the thoughtful direction of Lila Neugebauer. But the sentiments are genuine and the emotions they raise are potent...This is a hard play to watch - like a play that opens with a deathly ill person and doggedly follows that person to the grave. In fact, if they gave a prize for Most Depressing Play of the Season, this one would win...To be fair, there are moments of relief...A play that’s guaranteed to tear you apart." Full Review

Preview lif p140 logo 4x6 300 l1
85
Variety

“Radcliffe proves to be a master of comedy in ‘The Lifespan of a Fact’... If we were living through a different moment in time, the writer’s fabricated but emotionally wrenching 'truth' would easily outweigh the fact-checker’s chilly reality of events. But with the leader of our nation stomping on truth as we know it, and the very essence of reality imperiled by political fact-stretchers, the debate at the heart of this play transcends comedy and demands serious attention." Full Review

Preview bh showscore 800x1200
60
Variety

“The sublime McTeer plays the divine Sarah Bernhardt, who plays the immortal Hamlet...This is all interesting, even provocative, but what’s missing is some reasonable dramatic conflict...Under Von Stuelpnagel’s tightly choreographed direction, this solid cast of characters encircle Bernhardt like planets following their star. And blazing stars they certainly are, both McTeer and Bernhardt, yoked in a dynamic character study that, for all its shining moments, is no play.” Full Review

Preview bandbacktogether
75
Variety

"Although simplistic by design, the script is funny without being hilarious, grooving along mainly on its many goofy throwaway lines...Nunes delivers a cool performance and a killer musical turn, and runs away with the show...Cheap laughs? You bet, but even cheap laughs count; and let’s admit it—it feels so good to laugh real laughs on Broadway." Full Review

Preview aintnodisco
30
Variety

“Lyrics from a song in the new musical ‘This Ain’t No Disco’...will make us yearn for the golden age of disco...This new musical is just as dumb as that dopey lyric...The costumes are imitative, the performances are caricatures, and the choreography is awful...All energy and no style...The repetitive music doesn’t lean into the changing trends, while the choreography just re-works the same old steps for tired feet...’This ain’t no disco’, to be sure.” Full Review

Preview mpm2
85
Variety

"Director Lila Neugebauer, who brilliantly grasped the big theatrical gestures in 'The Wolves' at Lincoln Center, is just as scrupulous about defining small but definitive moments...The episodic structure is as integral to the play as its content. It’s up to us to fill in the blanks, because this is how life is lived, in little fits and starts that we later recall and either re-live in our minds or decide to forget." Full Review

Preview st plum 800x1200
80
Variety

"For a play with serious matters on its mind, 'Skintight' is packed with jokes — droll ones, smart ones, silly ones, and some that are quite moving. The men may have all the laugh lines, but Menzel is marvelous at giving Jodi’s annoying smothering-mother the plaintive air of someone who feels completely at a loss in a world she never dreamed of...The play has no plot, in a conventional sense, which makes it feel loose and baggy...But let’s not take all the fun out of this smart play." Full Review

Preview tbitb1
90
Variety

"Festivities are certainly in order for this superbly mounted 50th anniversary production...If there’s one thing this staid theater season is more than ready for, it’s a motley crew of gay friends getting together to celebrate...Crowley is a master of the bitchy one-liner, so the play is littered with quotable bon mots...Happily, a lot about the play now seems dated — but not everything, and not in all circles of society, which makes this anniversary presentation doubly welcome." Full Review

Preview tic 04 26 showscore 800x1200 static
75
Variety

"Helmer George C. Wolfe has trimmed the play to a reasonable length without losing the nuances in the various life histories of the boys in the barroom. But this is still a long play with a lot of moving parts. The first act, in which all the characters are introduced and roughly defined, is the most attenuated. Everyone lightens up – a bit too much, actually – in the second act, which shoots for comedy. But everything comes together in the third act, which spells Drama with a capital D." Full Review

Preview sum p125 projectto 800x1200 l1
45
Variety

"A narrow-minded jukebox musical that views its titular heroine in a vacuum. The great songs are pretty much all here...LaChanze is here, too, and in glorious voice, along with a thin biographical book that hardly does justice to Summer's life or her music...Despite some good songs and uplifting vocals from her backup singers, LaChanze is pressed to carry the whole show on her back...Laughs are few and far between...The song lyrics, not the spoken dialogue, are what matter in this show." Full Review

Preview myfairlady
85
Variety

"This jubilant revival is meticulously mounted and entirely welcome – despite the eccentric casting choice of Lauren Ambrose as Eliza...As Lincoln Center productions go, this one, under Sher’s scrupulous direction, is among the more spectacular...There are things that could have been better managed...But we’re nit-picking here. With Lerner and Loewe’s soaring score and Sher’s respectful staging, a beloved show comes alive in all its glory to end the theater season on a high." Full Review

Preview 18coalg 0123 showscore  1
60
Variety

"Ridloff is a stunning performer...Conflict between the speaking world and the silent world was portrayed more forcefully in the original production...Lacking that solid thematic foundation, Medoff's play deflates into just another romantic drama about mismatched lovers...The writer doesn’t seem to have any special aptitude for the language of love, and his efforts to lighten it up are embarrassing...Jackson doesn’t give off much heat for a lover with a burning heart." Full Review

Preview ttw show score 800x1200
80
Variety

"Watching Glenda Jackson in theatrical flight is like looking straight into the sun. Her expressive face registers her thoughts while guarding her feelings. But it’s the voice that really thrills...This is a punishing play. The sentiments are cold and steely, and even though the language is beautiful, it is fierce...If there is one thing Jackson is not, it is sentimental. There are lines that some thesps would milk like a cow. But not Jackson, with her commitment to truth in performance." Full Review

Preview angels
90
Variety

"Elliott’s production approaches Kushner’s overflowing dramatic riches by balancing the realistic style of the early domestic scenes with the fantastic surrealism of the later dream sequences...In introducing his substantial cast of characters, Kushner humanizes the tragedy of their lot with flashes of spiky New York (i.e., gay) humor...We’re entangled in Kushner’s expanding themes, amazingly prescient for their own time and still of critical importance to ours." Full Review

Preview frozen final superjumbo
65
Variety

"Credit the thawing trend in 'Frozen' to the lovable characters of Jennifer Lee, and to the warmly human cast...Levy is stunning as Elsa...Murin makes a darling Anna...To the extent that a plot exists at all, it’s a soggy one...The real conflict, the stuff of drama, is all internal — Elsa battling her inner self — and difficult to dramatize...'Frozen' belongs to Elsa, who has the heroic stature and tragic flaw of a true heroine — but no villainous anti-hero to overcome in battle. What a waste." Full Review

Preview jerry springer for website
70
Variety

"Surprisingly free of the sometimes savage cruelty that distinguished the show from its wimpy competitors...Deliciously dirty lyrics...The lyrics are even funnier set to Thomas's surprisingly delicate musical compositions...As one loser after another claims their 'Springer Moment'...None of this nonsense loses its charm...Until Act Two...At this point, everyone from Satan and Jesus to Adam and Eve get into the game, but sad to say, the humor falls flat and the show just isn’t the same." Full Review

Preview k4
55
Variety

"The problem with Sydney - and with the play overall - is that her ambitions are much too vague and utterly unsexy...Kail, normally a savvy director, isn't much help with the unwieldy material...It's hard to find the drama in a play that's heavy with talk but light on thought. Although the clashing ethical codes of traditional politicians and young barnburners seems an incendiary topic, Burgess misses her chance to strike the match." Full Review

Preview until the flood
80
Variety

"Eye-opening and quietly moving...Orlandersmith brings an entire community to life by channeling her interviews with people who were on the scene of this inflammatory racial incident...Orlandersmith slips in and out of character...It’s hard to say exactly what Orlandersmith does that makes all these people come to life...Somehow, she gets under these black skins and white skins and finds the common humanity of people who are just…people.” Full Review

Preview m5
50
Variety

"The offbeat premise is intriguing, but the writer fails to take it all the way, choosing a surreal treatment that is visually stunning but intellectually hollow...O’Hara, doubling as director, hasn’t quite decided how he wants us to feel about Jason’s dilemma...Despite being twisted, the Christian symbolism is clever...But it’s alarming to realize that, although the play seems to have come to an end, it’s only intermission and there’s another whole act to go." Full Review

Preview thechildren
85
Variety

"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." Full Review

Preview spongebob
80
Variety

"Kyle Jarrow’s book retains the two key elements of the Nicktoon: the cheerful sea sponge’s unquenchable optimism and his selflessly heroic efforts to rescue his friends ...Landau’s hallucinogenic stagecraft transcends the show’s television origins by speaking a visual language that’s three-dimensional and boldly theatrical...It’s not as much of a gimmick as it seems, but without a signature sound, there’s no signature style. What there is, though, is plenty of giddy, goofy fun for all." Full Review

Preview tw showscore 800x1200  1
45
Variety

"This funny, violent play is one of Sam Shepard’s best works, a fierce summation of some of his undying themes...If there’s one thing a production of 'True West' must have, it’s that haunting sense of the two brothers being one person at war with himself. That’s exactly what director James Macdonald’s new Broadway production doesn’t have...More critically, there’s no real sense of danger when the brothers finally trash the kitchen and go for each other’s throats." Full Review

Preview tkam 06 07 show score 800x1200
85
Variety

"The ever-likable Daniels, whose casting was genius, gives a strong and searching performance as Atticus Finch...The rest of the large and very fine cast perform their parts with all their hearts, under Sher’s impeccably fine-tuned direction...More faithful than not to its source...The designers have done a beautiful job of conjuring that era without smothering the narrative...This play belongs to Atticus Finch. He holds the stage and he wins our love." Full Review

Preview pain
75
Variety

"Sitting in the literal dark with the unpredictable narrator of Eno’s intellectually dizzying drama is still a dangerous thrill...Hall’s deadly deadpan is deeply funny, in an unnerving way...Hall tries his level best to be true to this self-absorbed character; but he just can’t help himself. He’s a fine actor, but a personable one, much too likable to pull off the character’s blinding, self-regarding narcissism." Full Review

Preview ts9
55
Variety

“An affectionate if ill-considered revival…As imperfectly directed here by Moises Kaufman, Urie has made little attempt to make the role of Arnold his own…The trimmed-down show has kept its basic storyline but lost some of its grace notes…Arnold’s story is as sweet as ever…Does this history piece hold up? Yes, in the sense that the show is kind to its characters and true to its dated sensibilities. No, in the sense that the characters are unbelievably sweet and its sensibilities are dated.” Full Review

Preview ferryman poster
90
Variety

"Glorious is not too strong a word for director Sam Mendes’s production...Flawless ensemble work by a large and splendid cast adds depth to the characters in this sprawling drama that is at once a domestic calamity and a political tragedy...The domestic dramas in this household are as primal as those in any Greek tragedy, if not as classically restrained...We can only watch in horror and dread as the extraordinary characters that Butterworth has brought to life are snuffed out." Full Review

Preview djdyla9w0aakw k
70
Variety

"Some of Dylan’s songs are a poor fit for this highly specific setting...But that doesn’t invalidate McPherson’s insight that Dylan’s narrative lyrics express a sense of existential detachment, of longing for connection that reflect the uncertainties of 1930s America...Better to sit back and just enjoy the music — and credit McPherson with giving each song the gift of clarity. If not always apropos to their dramatic moments, the lyrics are clearly intelligible." Full Review

Preview the true for website 1 orig
80
Variety

"In his laser-focused view, White shows us exactly how machine politics works without taking a moral position on the patronage system on which it’s based. His only false step is the character of Bill McCormick, a bland young man...Anyone who has ever been involved in a political campaign should find this play enthralling. Everyone else in the room can marvel at the ferocity of Falco’s performance and the passion of her character." Full Review

Preview 800x1200
45
Variety

"An over-written, over-designed, and generally overdone production...Thanks, no doubt, to the Oracle of Delphi (played here by the impishly funny Peppermint), it’s a miracle that at least some of the wit in Jeff Whitty’s original book gets through...The show never recovers from the pervasive feeling of exhaustion. There’s the exertion of making the stilted Spencer Liff choreography seem vaguely vogue. There’s the constant struggle to push and shove songs into places where they don’t fit." Full Review

Preview swm poster
85
Variety

"In 'Straight White Men,' Young Jean Lee’s cutting but deeply humane satire about straight white male privilege and pain, Armie Hammer, Josh Charles and, in an especially heart-wrenching performance, Paul Schneider play three brothers with mid-life issues. In director Anna D. Shapiro’s super-smart production...The re-written version of the play seems to have extended and pumped up the fun and games from the original version." Full Review

Preview log carousel.png  960x480 q85 crop upscale
45
Variety

“There’s potential drama — and comedy — in this situation, if Harrison had the heart for it. Unfortunately, he’d rather just talk about it. There comes a point, roughly midway through the play, when the principals are so talked out on the subject that two of them go against character by having a quickie in the nursery…Conversation, of which there is much, is clever enough, but mostly shallow...Harrison has taken it upon himself to explain it all, at length and ad nauseam.” Full Review

Preview sugarinourwounds
55
Variety

"Regrettably, once he makes a big business of bringing the two lovers together, the playwright has little else to say about slavery, the South or the war...Knowing that the love story of Henry and James is part of a grand dramaturgical design gives it more weight. But experienced on its own, the romance speaks its name but moves on without leaving any echoes from its moment in history." Full Review

Preview pb1
60
Variety

"The play restricts itself to being an atmospheric but insubstantial slice of dramatic life. In this staging, Kristolyn Lloyd gives a lovely, self-effacing performance as Pumpkin...In lieu of a plot, Morisseau presents us with a cast of full-bodied characters...The characters are a few players short of the swinging band this play needs. But under the confident direction of Ruben Santiago-Hudson, the thesps have a good handle on their characters." Full Review

Preview trav showscore 800x1200
85
Variety

"The show's set advises us to please be quiet...But you can forget about that, because the sound of laughter can't be contained...This extravagant farce bristles with clever wordplay...Fun on its own etymological terms, this madcap comedy also tips its hat — a beat-up straw boater with a jaunty red hatband — to the spirit of revolution that galvanized Europe in 1917...Underneath the gem-like brilliance of its theatrical style, the play's dark subject matter emerges." Full Review

Preview hpatcc2
85
Variety

"The theater has brought its own brand of wizardry to the material. Visually and aurally, the show presents a panorama of dazzling effects that draw audible gasps from the audience...The story is a brand-new one, but there are plenty of familiar pleasures...But for all its inventive stagecraft devices, the show has a plot that really works as an extension of the Potter saga...We love seeing theater that shows us the true magic of great storytelling." Full Review

Preview rhc1
85
Variety

"Henry shows off the exceptionally beautiful voice of a genuine actor-singer, a voice that while warm and mellow, can also soar with joy and tremble in despair. Director Jack O’Brien has given us a conventional production of 'Carousel,' in the sense of a show that takes no risks but preserves and protects all the original values of a great American musical...In addition to the eye-and-ear-popping Henry, Jessie Mueller is enchanting." Full Review

Preview 800x1200 showscorefeatureimage q3 18 2036
65
Variety

"The show’s high fun factor comes as no surprise...Nicholaw gets this material. The stage swirls with non-stop traffic, if not perfectly executed dance movement...The staging is actually too busy, too colorful, too loud, as if Nicholaw doesn't want us to notice that not much of interest is happening...Fey has front-loaded the show with great gags...Snappy one-liners...Benjamin's lyrics aren't half as clever as Fey's off-the-cuff wisecracks, but they get the job done and are quirky enough." Full Review

Preview lh.showscore
80
Variety

"The play looks both kindly and critically upon the kind of characters Lonergan loves to write: working-class stiffs, generally decent people who are unexpectedly challenged by issues of ethics...Helmer Trip Cullman does his best work with small, tight ensembles like this one, so there’s no slack in the emotional tension and no escape from the sticky web that even nice people get tangled up in when they tell lies – especially the lies they tell themselves." Full Review

Preview harryclarke
75
Variety

"Personally, I could have learned more about young Philip’s schoolboy miseries. But playwright David Cale is anxious to get to the good part, where the kid turns into a full-blown confidence man...Crudup takes Harry deeper into the dark recesses of his adopted identity — especially the side of Harry who toys unmercifully with poor Mark and the members of his generous but gullible family. Crudup plays every character in this story with vocal precision and some subtle physical tricks." Full Review

Preview escape to margaritaville show art  copy
60
Variety

"The hedonistic spirit of Buffett's feel-good 'gulf and western' music is on flamboyant display in this witless but colorful songbook musical custom-tailored for the fans...Garcia and O'Malley break no fresh ground with their corny story...But the placement of the Buffett songs isare smartly matched with the developments of the so-called plot...However well packaged, the show just isn't a good fit for New York...The production is ship-shape to travel...anywhere but here." Full Review

Preview 1004657715 fl sar coljhandelm24b
85
Variety

"This Dolly’s personal style is to twinkle and charm people into getting her way. She also has the acting chops to moisten eyeballs when she entreats her late husband to bless her renouncement of widowhood...A new addition to the cast, Charlie Stemp, seems a bit too broad in the comic role of Cornelius’s sidekick...As usually happens when a director and a choreographer keep a sharp eye on their baby, the overall production of this classic never looked better." Full Review

Preview hangmen showscore
85
Variety

"Under the fastidious direction of Matthew Dunster, the ensemble work is slickly well-oiled in the best tradition of barroom plays...Despite the howling laughter earned at the expense of these northern bumpkins and their semi-literate discourse, there’s a black storm cloud behind McDonagh’s surface wit...It’s a treat to watch these antagonists, played with excruciating edginess by Addy and Flynn, circling one another with murder in their eyes." Full Review

Preview sbh 800x1200
75
Variety

"Lithgow is the most personable of performers...The two stories are charming examples of the ones that his dramatically disposed father recited to his audience of spellbound children...'Haircut' is a deceptively folksy yarn...'Uncle Fred Flits By' is a typically droll Wodehouse story...It’s not a typical Broadway audience’s cup of tea. But it takes on richer meaning when Lithgow tells us that it was his father’s favorite story, and the one he read to his parents when they were old and ill." Full Review

Preview farinelli
65
Variety

"There’s not much to Claire van Kampen’s simplistic script...But with a lead performance by Oscar and Tony winner Mark Rylance in full sail, it’s enough...In the context of the period setting, the anachronistic language is barbarically contemporary...That’s a pity, since director John Dove has taken such pains to re-create the heavily gilded style of the formal Baroque setting of this production." Full Review

Preview down
60
Variety

"Sevigny plays a sexy-hippie drug addict like a pro in Rosenfeld’s unfocused new play. But she also gracefully shows us the better side of her character...Rosenfeld can’t seem to focus his attention on a central character — and director Elliott can’t seem to do anything about that...Mary is such a compelling character that Rosenfeld is forced to confine her to her room and have her shoot up and nod off in order to concentrate on the other players in his muddled story." Full Review

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80
Variety

"An uplifting revival...The ungainly in-the-round stage of Broadway’s Circle in the Square is put to imaginative use...Ahrens and Flaherty, a well-matched team, produced more than twenty songs for this musical. Besides being perfectly lovely, they also advance the narrative in ways rarely seen...A sequence of dramatic songs – from 'Waiting for Life to Begin' through the heartbreaking 'Forever Yours' – take Ti Moune on the journey of love. Full Review