Martin

Brooklyn | 65+ | Male
About:  I love theater and great acting and have been following theater for many years, here in NYC and wherever I travel.
Reviews (161)
87
During previews
Great writing, Edgy, Great staging, Ambitious, Great acting

See it if Rock band plays loud Dengue Fever & other material. I was impressed w/ the play of Cambodia before and after the Khmer Rouge. Strong cast.

Don't see it if Rock music juxtaposed w/ play of difficult history & painful memories for many of us who lived through it or know of the horrors. Tuf stuff.

79
Strong revival of a now dated play

See it if Well cast and directed production of Charles Fuller's World War II play which still packs an honest gut punch on racism in the military.

Don't see it if The play is powerful with a variety of believable characters, but too often relies on narration when dialogue would be more effective.

79
The Rose Tattoo
Midtown W
Romantic, Refreshing, Funny, Entertaining, Delightful

See it if The show comes to life in Act 2 when the delightful Emun Elliott appears and sets his sights on Marisa Tomei. Their scenes are funny,

Don't see it if involving, joyous. A 3-act play done in 2 can be umbalanced & is so here. But some scene re-jigging at the finale nicely focuses on romance.

96
During previews
The Inheritance
Midtown W
Masterful, Profound, Great staging, Must see, Riveting

See it if Having now seen both parts, I got tkts to see it again in January this time in one day. What an extraordinary theatrical achievement!

Don't see it if It's already *the* play of the season, there's just so much buzz. On the train ride home last night, people were raving about it.

Also Tony Goldwyn temporarily takes over for John Benjamin Hickey as Harry ... Read more Read less

85
Absorbing, Great staging, Intelligent, Relevant, Riveting

See it if Handsome & very large production (set envelops the audience) w/ a towering perf. by Jeff Daniels and fine cast. It's a juggernaut of a hit!

Don't see it if It's likely to cost u big $$ to see in cramped, uncomfortable seating & the sense of a mob scene on entering the Shubert Th. Film's better!

92
During previews
Dublin Carol
Chelsea
Absorbing, Great staging, Intelligent, Profound, Masterful

See it if Another fine, intimate, dark & intensely moving play from this fine Irish playwright, Conor McPherson. Super production from Irish Rep.

Don't see it if Thought it's not long (1 1/2 hrs) the pace is deliberate, the ideas and feelings are presented slowly. It's set in a dreary funeral parlor.

74
The Mother
Chelsea
Excruciating, Profound, Intelligent, Great staging

See it if I chose to see this show because of the Atlantic Theater, the author & the cast including Isabelle Huppert and Chris Noth. It's a harrowing

Don't see it if portrait of a middle-aged woman, wife and mother's deteriorating mental state. Husband, son and son's woman friend seem to want to help.

85
Great score & libretto, Great writing, Entertaining

See it if Cole Porter's most memorable score & thoroughly enjoyable show. It's well cast: Kelly & Will look great, John Pankow is fantastic as 1stman

Don't see it if This production is a copy of the better '99 version directed by M.Blakemore. Vulgar additions to the libretto are grating and anachronistic.

75
Tootsie (NYC)
Midtown W
Audience fave, Hilarious, Clever

See it if Opens tonight...good luck. This show is very funny, well performed, has a slick production and the story moves along briskly, but...

Don't see it if the music and lyrics don't add much to the story except the obvious and often w/ ear shattering loudness. Santino Fontana is irresistible!

79
Quirky, Slow, Refreshing, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if Always loved this brilliant Sondheim score, have seen many productions since 1st in 1981. Libretto still has problems, but cast is likable &

Don't see it if sing well (all 6) especially the Franklin and Charlie. Cluttered set is no help, nor are cuts to book and 1 added song: "He's Only a Boy."

88
During previews
Must see, Entertaining, Funny, Great staging, Intelligent

See it if Do I really want to rehash the Clinton's political and personal lives? OMG yes, if Lucas Hnath is author and Joe M's directing. Superb show!

Don't see it if It can get old hat, but the production, the actors, and the ideas are so fresh and hit their targets so well, left and right will love it.

86
During previews
Intelligent, Profound, Great writing, Funny, Relevant

See it if This, O'Casey's 1st successful play (1923), is getting a showing from Irish Rep in a season w/ 2 of his other great plays. Cast is super.

Don't see it if Don't like Irish plays on the "troubles"? Well, begone with ya. Small venue, small stage; alert: cold air draft house right, wear a hat.

89
Carmen Jones
East Village
Must see, Absorbing, Entertaining, Intelligent, Riveting

See it if CARMEN JONES hasn't been done in NY in years; the Bizet music, thrilling; Hammerstein's lyrics, terrific (the dat's, etc. are now that's).

Don't see it if CSC space has been changed to in-the-square seating which makes for some sight line problems. Not all the voices are tops.

Also This production will be remembered for making Anika Noni Rose a star. ... Read more Read less

69
During previews
Excruciating, Dated, Disappointing, Indulgent, Some fun & genuine poignancy

See it if Four interlocked plays (set every 20 years 1925 to 1985), excellent production, terrific actors . One character, Spates, ages from 17 to 77.

Don't see it if BUT 1st half (the setup) was SO tedious, I thought I was in Ayckbourn HELL. Feels long at over 2 1/2 hrs, yet caring sets-in & admiration.

79
Absorbing, Relevant, Quirky, Confusing, Disappointing

See it if It should have been a much better production, better casting, better direction, less cutting corners ($$$$)... Joshua Henry is vivid.

Don't see it if and heartbreaking, but not so Jesse Mueller. So well done is the dancing, it threatens to overwhelm the evening. I'll remember the score++

83
Later Life
Midtown W
Profound, Refreshing, Riveting, Thought-provoking, Romantic

See it if Mid-, late-life love & romance brilliantly observed by this wise playwright. Ultimately, very moving when faced with missed chances & loss.

Don't see it if You don't have patience for a wise play, full of life lessons, running under 90 minutes. Excellently cast and Keen Co. production. Bravo!

85
During previews
Profound, Riveting, Thought-provoking, Intense, Absorbing

See it if Compassionate family drama, v/ well acted by a superb company of players headed by Blair Brown, Peter Maloney, Mary McCann and C. J. Wilson.

Don't see it if It's early in the run and the production may be still finding its way technically, but it's Atlantic and Neil Pepe is at the helm.

79
The Traveling Lady
West Village
Absorbing, Exquisite, Funny, Must see, Profound

See it if you love good theater. This is a charming and touching play by the masterful playwright, Horton Foote. Jean Lichty is the lovely lead.

Don't see it if If you know and love Foote's work, you will have a memorable experience. Don't like Foote's work? Well, look elsewhere for theater magic.

90
Absorbing, Funny, Intelligent, Relevant, Great acting

See it if u want to see a riveting play + four sensational performances. Laurie Metcalf deserves the Tony. You believe all that has happened to Nora

Don't see it if after she left 15 years before. You'll be thrilled for her new freedom & feel for what she still wants/needs. The issues are relevant now.

80
Intelligent, Profound, Thought-provoking, Ambitious, Resonant

See it if I found this play fascinating and was totally absorbed by it. It worked on many levels : I especially loved the sinister doings just below

Don't see it if the surface interactions. The New Group gave it a fine production w/ Matthew Broderick plowing charmingly through gobs of text. 8 actors A++

57
Indulgent, Excruciating, Disappointing, Confusing, Cliched

See it if Andy Karl and the physical production are terrific. Otherwise, I'm going right to the "Don't see it if..." box.

Don't see it if I have little good to say about this musical. I found it trite and obvious and none of the songs caught my attention. No better on CD.

54
The Profane
Midtown W
Great staging, Indulgent, Disappointing, Cliched, Banal

See it if u care more for production values than a dramatically satisfying & cogent play. Playwrights Horizons production values are great as usual.

Don't see it if Sadly this is not a well written play. The ideas (conflicting family views on Islam) potentially fascinating, the execution is feeble.

78
Absorbing, Great staging, Intelligent, Resonant, Funny

See it if u like a good old fashioned Arthur Miller melodrama. I do and I had an absorbing evening at the theater. The cast is solid with Mark Ruffalo

Don't see it if and Tony Shalhoub superb as the brothers at odds over the old furniture and their past lives and behavior. Danny DeVito is the appraiser +++

82
The New Yorkers
Midtown W
Great staging, Great singing, Funny, Dated, Entertaining

See it if It's gone now, but, cross fingers, there will be a recording. Two number were outstanding w/ sublime orchestrations: "Love for Sale" and

Don't see it if "Let's Fly Away." Cyrille Aimée scored a major success as "A Lady of the Evening" and Scarlett Strallen stood out as a "strong" ingenue.+++

59
Ambitious, Cliched, Disappointing, Edgy, Thought-provoking

See it if Sarah Ruhl is an original and wildly imaginative. The play gets at some brave aspects about couples in love: how much is enough & how many?

Don't see it if The play presents characters and situations, but doesn't fully argue its point of view, which I think is valid and even desirable. Actors+

84
During previews
Miles maleson's 1917 & 1919 adaptations of stories by chekhov and tolstoy

See it if Entertainment and education highlight the Mint's fascinating double bill from Russian literature. Highly rewarding & effective perfs and

Don't see it if a playbill filled w/ background information. I attended on January 26, 2020 w/ an excellent talk back with Prof. Maya Cantu & Jonathan Bank.

91
Judgment Day
Upper E Side
Intense, Riveting, Profound, Intelligent, Great staging

See it if Big, brilliant production of a fascinating 1937 play, a scathing indictment of regular people in Germany just before WWII. An hour & a half.

Don't see it if You don't like the massive venue and the challenging sight lines. The audio was good, but w/ pronounced amplification which was necessary.

92
During previews
Thought-provoking, Funny, Profound, Great writing, Absorbing

See it if Love Horton Foote plays and Sig. Th. is giving us an excellent production. Quinn is superb as the grieving father; Nielsen, poignant as mom.

Don't see it if Seen early in the run, things will tighten up. Nielsen, a fine comedienne, walking a fine line w/ serious/dithery role. U will be moved.***

92
The Ferryman (NYC)
Midtown W
Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging, Profound, Riveting

See it if Playing catch-up here finally writing up some shows seen last year. This was one of the best, a scathing overview of 1980s Northern Ire.

Don't see it if Some thought it was overcrowded w/ character and plot, I may have had to work to keep up, but I thrilled to the writing, plotting & acting.

85
Clever, Intelligent, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Enjoyed this play and production, especially the acting of Mary-Louise Parker and Will Hochman. It's a smart, surprising & moving play.

Don't see it if Dialogue sounds self-conscious & pretentious. Only 2 actors on stage in the barn that is Studio 54 works. Kudos to director, David Cromer.

64
During previews
The Great Society
Upper W Side
Slow, Indulgent, Disappointing, Dated, Cliched

See it if Appears to be a prestige engagement at Lincoln Center w/ star actor Brian Cox as LBJ, but it's a bummer. The play is cliche ridden & slow.

Don't see it if Disappointing. I should have known, having experienced other plays by the author. Many fine actors are playing know politicos from the 60s.

79
Ambitious, Profound, Intelligent, Absorbing

See it if I scored it the highest # for "good" because it's not "great." I had a vg/ time. It's a "great" play & Brandon J. Dirden was memorable as

Don't see it if Marcus Brutus. Excessive use of chest pounding and calisthenics by whole company & a # of actors not well cast. Plus for Will S. in B'klyn.

88
Funny, Entertaining, Profound, Great writing, Great staging

See it if Excellent mounting of Sean O'Casey's most famous play. Directed by Neil Pepe, it's very well cast with Maryann Plunkett & Ciarán O'Reilly.

Don't see it if It's barely possible to find negative: perhaps O'Reilly's Capt. Boyle is a bit too puckish & Plunkett works v/ hard to rev-up the emotion.

90
During previews
Ambitious, Absorbing, Must see, Masterful, Great writing

See it if Fine production of this powerful and controversial play set during the 'Easter Rising' of 1916. O'Casey criticizes all points of view which

Don't see it if lead to tragedy for ordinary people. This and the other 2 plays in the author's "Dublin Trilogy" have been extended to June 22, 2019. Grab.

94
Masterful, Profound, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Brilliantly theatrical history of Lehman bros. in America. Glass box rotating set in vast panorama projecting place & mood. Superb theatre!

Don't see it if Ready for 3 1/2 hours, 2 breaks? Superb actors play Hayum, Mendel & Meyer plus multiple characters. Big commitment, big payoff. Thrilling!!

79
Nantucket Sleigh Ride
Upper W Side
Funny, Confusing, Entertaining, Ambitious, Clever

See it if Jerry Z has conceived an effective production, John L is an example of actor/ character meshing, some of cast of 10 play numerous parts+++

Don't see it if Negative notice: Guare throws it all on the dramatic wall, only some of it sticks. Torturous to summarize the plot, though it's a jolly ride

92
The Hard Problem
Upper W Side
Riveting, Must see, Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting

See it if What a refreshing and moving experience I had at this play today. Loved Stoppard's brilliant dialogue, Jack O'Brien & his four-star cast.

Don't see it if You don't like Stoppard? Give this one a try. It's one of the smartest and most satisfying plays in town. Will read the script (&I have it).

68
Ambitious, Disappointing, Slow, Great acting, Cliched

See it if Production, set and actors are very good. Credit Sheldon Best & Chinza Uche as the young men for bringing credibility to the story.

Don't see it if The story of gay love in the Civil War south has potential, but the author should use fewer cliches, less narration & more dramatization.

67
Dated, Disappointing, Indulgent, Slow, Overrated

See it if Mercedes Ruehl was sensational, but Michael Urie's performance was one-note and the play just seemed to go on and on.

Don't see it if And that's with deep cuts. It's still too long. Guess we've come a long way since 1981. (Back then it was all so "new").

86
Harry Clarke
West Village
Masterful, Riveting, Dizzying, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if Brilliant, entertaining performance by Crudup of fascinating, sometimes confusing play. Ultimately a rich and memorable theater experience.

Don't see it if Some theatergoers may not agree and, therefore, may have a difficult time with the play.

96
During previews
Enchanting, Great acting, Great staging, Masterful, Exquisite

See it if You know it's a great musical...well, this is a great production. Performances, production, orchestra are all a joy. Musical comedy heaven!

Don't see it if The Henry Higgins is superb, the Eliza Doolittle, delightful. Three hours of B'way theater highest quality. Another Bartlett Sher triumph.

78
Pipeline
Upper W Side
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Disappointing, Overrated

See it if It's gone now, I only just made it to Sat.'s matinee. Respected the play; admired the the production and acting. Play itself could use

Don't see it if more work. The scene between the boy and his father is truly gripping. Too bad Tasha Lawrence takes over the play, and not in a good way.

67
The Roundabout
Midtown E
Disappointing, Cliched, Dated, Indulgent, Slow

See it if You can't resist "Olde-Fash" British plays, even a rare, early one written by a fine playwright--J.B.Priestly, author of WHEN WE ARE MARRIED

Don't see it if & AN INSPECTOR CALLS, etc. This was tedious & confusing beyond measure & not very well played by an English theater company. Get me out!

94
Hilarious, Must see, Great staging, Delightful, Romantic

See it if U love the show, Bette & a terrific B'way musical. The production is brilliant and it fits snugly into the Shubert, like a gem in a perfect

Don't see it if setting. Pierce gets a restored song at the top of Act II, "Penny in My Pocket." Nice! The big numbers are thrilling. There's so much joy!

Also Saw it again, this time w/ the adorable, precious and oh-so-funny Bern... Read more Read less

86
Escaped Alone
Brooklyn
Delightful, Funny, Great staging, Great acting, Profound

See it if After the "absurdist" non-connected dialogue starting off, I found the play very rewarding, if dark, perhaps even bleak. 4 superb perfs.

Don't see it if The joyful surprise was seeing Linda Bassett (Nurse Crane on CALL THE MIDWIFE) in person. I must get the script to read & recall.

63
The Whirligig
Midtown W
Ambitious, Confusing, Disappointing, Indulgent, Slow

See it if Sorry to pile on in the negative, but this show is only worth seeing for the terrific actors and the top quality production values.

Don't see it if Otherwise, it's all very familiar territory done just short of cliche. The playwright's work will be produced again and I'll support him.

95
Great acting, Great singing, Great staging, Great writing, Must see

See it if u love Sondheim (& who doesn't?) and are excited by the two stars, Jake Gyllenhaal & Annaleigh Ashford, and the excellent supporting cast.

Don't see it if Sondheim is must-see and there's the renovated Hudson Theatre to experience. The Chromolume #7 in Act II is all color and light. Terrific.

78
Wakey, Wakey
Midtown W
Absorbing, Great staging, Intelligent, Profound, Resonant

See it if It may be gone, but Will Eno's play was deeply felt and very moving. Beautifully played by Michael Emerson and the oh-so-comforting

Don't see it if January LaVoy (memorable also in TWO TRAINS RUNNING at Signature Theatre as well). Emerson...superb and tragic. A most effecting play!

67
Indulgent, Quirky, Disappointing, Banal

See it if u love the play and wish to see a v/ modern take on this exquisite memory play. Sally Field is fine as Amanda, Finn Wittrock is a poignant

Don't see it if Gentleman Caller. Joe Mantello is too knowing & slick as Tom. Laura, in a wheelchair, has physical handicaps, but is unsympathetic & cold.

63
Kid Victory
Gramercy
Disappointing, Needs more work, tuneful, well played and performed

See it if I think it might be gone now. This ambitious, not altogether successful musical, was worth seeing for an intriguing score and Karen Ziemba!

Don't see it if Hopefully the creators will put in more work on this serious show with great potential. I hope there will be a recording. The score was ++++