miandering

New York City
About:  The main thing you should know about me is that I'm a pretty tough critic. It's not easy to impress me, so if I rate something highly, it must have done something right. (Actually, several things. I set the bar particularly high for acting, so if a character is not believable, it's hard for me to li... Read more Read less
Reviews (61)
85
Pockets
Soho/Tribeca
Charming, Refreshing, Delightful

See it if you could use a break from reality. This would be a delightful distraction.

Don't see it if You hate fun?

52
Passage
Soho/Tribeca
Obnoxious, Heavy-handed, Unsubtle, Pedantic, Ambitious

See it if you want a play that explores issues of colonialism & racism in a reductive, uninteresting way, topped off with 4th-wall-breaking pedantry.

Don't see it if you've ever traveled & thought about colonialism/racism/effect of 1st-world travelers on the developing world. You hate being talked down to

Also I kind of hated this play and was offended at how the narrator talked ... Read more Read less

71
Overrated, Fluffy, Disappointing, Cliched, Banal

See it if you're a fan of traditional Broadway musicals & don't mind triteness. You don't mind that Andy Karl has zero charm compared to Bill Murray.

Don't see it if you love the movie & Bill Murray and agree that he's what makes it great. This just doesn't cut it. It's lackluster, trite & lacking charm.

92
Life Sucks.
Midtown W
Fun, Refreshing, Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if you'd enjoy a clever comedic romp that's both a parody of & love song to Chekhov. It's thoroughly enjoyable even if you don't know his work.

Don't see it if you are a Chekhov purist and/or you need your fourth wall kept intact.

Also I saw the both this run and the original one at the Wild Project in th... Read more Read less

90
Clever, Funny, Great writing, Great acting, Delightful

See it if You love good theater—and maybe Chekhov (but don't have a stick up your ass). Shocked by all the negative reviews. It was fucking brilliant!

Don't see it if You: have no sense of humor; can't appreciate a serious talent; have a stick up your ass; don't think adults should curse; want to miss out.

Also Interesting that many negative reviews mention vulgar language—which I... Read more Read less

92
Moving, Delightful, Hilarious, Must see, Quirky

See it if you like Mike Birbiglia; you like great comedy; you have or have ever thought about having children; you want to leave the theater smiling.

Don't see it if you have no soul? Can't think of any reason not to see it. Not even if you already saw it. Because I did, before it went to Broadway.

71
The Conduct of Life
East Village
Disappointing, Great acting, Intense

See it if you don't have especially high expectations because it's by Irene Fornes; good acting can make an otherwise unappealing play worthwhile.

Don't see it if you can't deal with a play in a tiny, almost claustrophobic space that is relentlessly and almost exclusively about violence against women.

67
Trick or Treat
Midtown E
Disappointing, Overwrought, Not-a-comedy

See it if you enjoy family dramas, even if not well-acted or written. The plot had potential, but the playwright wasn't skilled enough to pull it off.

Don't see it if you're expecting a comedy. S-S describes it as a "dark comedy" but there is almost no humor in it at all. And it has way too much exposition

74
Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Overrated, Relevant

See it if you're interested in political debates about America's history & Constitution & how they relate to today, but don't have high expectations.

Don't see it if you expect any life-changing or deeply political thoughts or conclusions; anyone told you it's an absolute must-see. You'll be disappointed.

86
Days of Rage
Midtown W
Absorbing, Clever, Entertaining, Ambitious, Great acting

See it if you have any interest in the 60s, politics, 60s politics, or just in wanting to see a really good piece of theater with great performances.

Don't see it if you see politics and the world as black and white; you were a radical in the 60s and aren't open to judgement, criticism and humor.

79
Clever, Entertaining, Funny, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if you want to be entertained by fun, edgy, well-acted, interestingly staged feminist serio-comedy.

Don't see it if you are uncomfortable listening to women talk about their genitals more than most women actually talk about their genitals.

97
Ambitious, Intelligent, Riveting, Utterly unique, Thought-provoking

See it if you want to see an amazing, utterly unique play that is smart, thought-provoking & well acted, directed, written & staged. I srsly loved it.

Don't see it if you have no interest in smart, engaging, morally ambivalent, utterly unique plays with a fantastic cast; you are expecting a typical musical

79
Replay
Midtown E
Touching, Poignant, Entertaining

See it if you like one-person shows with good acting and writing, but don't expect to be wowed.

Don't see it if you dislike one-person shows with very sparse sets that explore the character's past.

66
Slow, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Overrated

See it if you: expect to learn some interesting things but not be very entertained; you are OK with not caring about characters if topic's interesting

Don't see it if you prefer your plays linear and character-driven. You have no interest in cerebral plays about history, ethics & non-battlefield warfare.

84
Absorbing, Intense, Ambitious, Touching, Entertaining

See it if you want to see a well-written, well-acted, heartfelt family drama peppered with funny moments—but don't expect We Live By the Sea greatness

Don't see it if No reason not to see it unless you are particularly sensitive to or triggered by depictions of kids with brain damage or other disabilities.

Also This was an enjoyable and also moving play, and even though its subjec... Read more Read less

61
Banal, Cliched, Disappointing, Indulgent, Fluffy

See it if you love musicals—even if they purport to be irreverant (subject matter: suicide! oooh!) but are just traditional musicals w/trite endings.

Don't see it if you: are expecting anything cutting edge; have a low tolerance for banality; don't usually like musicals; know what irreverent really means.

90
The Day I Became Black
Soho/Tribeca
Funny, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Resonant, Clever

See it if You have any interest in America, racial identity, racism and American history & culture. Bill tackles tough subjects with humor and warmth.

Don't see it if I was gonna say "...you don't think you have anything to learn about racism in America," but then realized that's exactly who SHOULD see it.

65
Confusing, Great acting, Disappointing, Great staging

See it if you understand Spanish. If not, you'll ultimately have to choose btw watching the play or reading the dialogue, as it's tough to do both.

Don't see it if you only like contemporary plays. Or hate Shakespearean/Cyrano-type comedies where no one recognizes if you change your hair or wear a hat.

72
Intense, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Ultimately-depressing

See it if You are sane. I am pretty sure any sane person in our country right now would want to see, & possibly enjoy (if that's the right word) this.

Don't see it if You think Donald Trump is anything less than a danger to not just our country but the planet.

Also I didn't love this even remotely as much as those I went to see it wit... Read more Read less

70
Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Ambitious, Science-based-theater

See it if You are interested in consciousness, neuroscience or phenomenology. And you don't mind middle-aged white men rapping about those topics.

Don't see it if You hate rap (or rap by middle-aged white men), have zero interest in the workings of the brain, +/or zero interest in rap songs about them.

40
The Undertaking
Midtown E
Ambitious, Confusing, Disappointing, Quirky

See it if You want to see something unusual and ambitious but ultimately not particularly interesting or well done.

Don't see it if I don’t think anyone should bother seeing this.

44
Some Old Black Man
Midtown E
Disappointing, Slow, Cliched, Banal

See it if You really really really want to see the actor who plays Bunk on the wire. But he and his fellow actor didn’t do a very good job at all.

Don't see it if You are expecting good acting and an interesting take on an important topic. I found it to be trite and pointless. Also poorly acted.

55
Balls
Midtown E
Ambitious, Great staging, Overrated, Disappointing

See it if You are interested in the battle of the sexes but not a particularly nuanced take on it. You don’t know about the history of sexism in sport

Don't see it if You are expecting a thought-provoking experience.

76
Folk Wandering
Midtown W
Ambitious, Clever, Entertaining, Disappointing, Great staging

See it if You are a fan of folk music and the folks storytelling.

Don't see it if You don’t like folk music or a non-linear storyline.

65
Ambitious, Confusing, Disappointing, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if You have an interest in the history of slavery in America.

Don't see it if You are squeamish, as it involves lynching and other disturbing teams surrounding this country’s history of slavery.

74
Good ideas, Dystopian, Relevant, Ambitious, Thought-provoking

See it if you like dytopian fiction; are interested in seeing something different by a talented newcomer; want to support independent theatre.

Don't see it if you aren't open to nontraditional ways of telling stories; have something against dystopian fiction; don't want to hear/support new voices.

Also While the ideas may have been better than the execution, this play was... Read more Read less

91
The Appointment
East Village
Relevant, Intelligent, Funny, Ambitious, Clever

See it if a funny, warped (in the best way), absurdist musical about abortion appeals to you; if this comes back to NYC, which apparently it may.

Don't see it if you are prudish, anti-choice or can't appreciate absurdist humor. Actually, if you are anti-choice, I really want you to see it!

98
Indecent
Midtown W
Masterful, Must see, Exquisite, Enchanting, Absorbing

See it if you have the chance; you have any interest in theatre history, jewish history and/or yiddish theatre; you are human and have human emotions.

Don't see it if you are homophobic and don't have a heart.

Also To put it simply: This play was beautiful. One of the most beautiful p... Read more Read less

49
Worse Than Tigers
West Village
Trying-to-be-shocking, Monotonous, Indulgent, Disappointing

See it if you like a lot of yelling and screaming and overwrought drama about a couple's relationship.

Don't see it if you have something better to do. After seeing it, my joke with my friend was about finding things "worse than Worse Than Tigers." Not many.

85
During previews
Great acting, Great staging, Refreshing, Relevant, Resonant

See it if you'd like an absorbing story of children coping with challenging lives; you appreciate good acting and a balance of realistic & feel-good.

Don't see it if you are so cynical and jaded that you can't enjoy a play of straight-up sincerity about people overcoming the odds stacked against them.

Also The highlight of the show was Courtney Thomas, who played Deja. She wa... Read more Read less

95
Delightful, Hilarious, Must see, Refreshing, Moving

See it if you like Mike Birbiglia; you like great comedy; you have or have ever thought about having children; you want to leave the theater smiling.

Don't see it if you have no soul? Can't think of any reason not to see it. Not even if you already saw it. Because I did, and then I went again on Broadway.

61
Confusing, Edgy, Great staging, Intense, Amazing-costumes

See it if you have the patience for plays without plot or dialogue; you dig steampunk; or you want to see some great costumes and staging.

Don't see it if you prefer traditional plays with linear plot lines; you are easily bored; or you are sensitive to violence, particularly against women.

71
Disappointing, Ambitious, Overrated, Dull

See it if you want to hear covers of Dylan songs more than you want a coherent, vibrant, entertaining play.

Don't see it if you're expecting great theater with characters you care about, a story arc and music that makes sense with the action it's highlighting.

Also While the only real negative I can say is that the songs most often di... Read more Read less

82
During previews
Great acting, Absorbing, Intelligent, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if you want to see a well-acted, good-but-not-amazing production, and aren't distracted by humor that is essentially pat TV laugh lines.

Don't see it if you have a low tolerance for Sorkin's laugh lines and think they may be too much like TV quips & therefore distract from weight of the play

Also The above, I realize, make it sound like I didn't like the play, which... Read more Read less

70
Apologia
Midtown W
Overrated, Intense, Indulgent, Disappointing

See it if you: have low expectations; love Stockard Channing; don't mind some truly bad acting mixed in with some great acting (but not THAT great).

Don't see it if you are expecting to see an amazing family drama; you have no patience for poor acting, even in a play where there's some truly great acting

70
The Headhunter
Lower E Side
Cliched, Entertaining

See it if you are into mob movies and TV and aren't expecting much beyond the cliches they usually offer; you don't need nuance to be entertained.

Don't see it if you need nuance and characters you actually care about in a play; you are squeamish when it comes to language and violence.

57
Slow, Overrated, Boring

See it if you are a huge fan of Caryl Churchill and want to see all of her plays, whether you enjoy them or not.

Don't see it if you are sleep-deprived or easily bored, have a short attention span or prefer light entertainment.

75
Clever, Funny, Entertaining, Silly in a good way

See it if you are in the mood for light, entertaining, self-consciously silly fare; you saw the title and thought it sounded like it might be a hoot.

Don't see it if you are not the kind of person who saw the title "Police Cops in Space" and thought it sounded like it might be a hoot.

79
Inescapable
Soho/Tribeca
Absorbing, Clever, Ambitious, Entertaining, Intense

See it if you are a fan of fringe theater and are interested in non-traditional plays that challenge you to try to figure out what is going on.

Don't see it if you: have no interest in exploring male friendship; dislike rapid-fire dialog; have very high expectations; are uncomfortable w/uncertainty.

84
The Tricky Part
Midtown W
Absorbing, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if you are a fan of storytelling or storytelling-type 1-person shows; you're interested in a nuanced perspective on child sexual abuse.

Don't see it if you're not comfortable hearing personal stories of child sexual abuse; you're not open to the idea that even this is not always black&white.

65
Gemini
Midtown W
Disappointing, Decent play, poor production

See it if like me, you grew up in the New York area in the 70s & always wondered what was up with that commercial with the woman slurping spaghetti.

Don't see it if 1. you have high expectations. This ain't no Broadway production. The acting definitely ain't so hot. 2. You are homophobic.

Also This is what my "see it if" refers to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v... Read more Read less

66
Rusalka
Lower E Side
Disappointing, Confusing, Entertaining

See it if you like moody period pieces or have an interest in WWII and/or The Resistance.

Don't see it if You have poor hearing (it was very difficult to hear in the venue, which made it harder to understand and therefore enjoy).

40
1984 (Broadway)
Midtown W
Ambitious, Confusing, Disappointing, Intense, Overrated

See it if You like a lot of bells and whistles but don't care much about plots making sense and characters you can give a shit about.

Don't see it if You aren't OK with the site of blood & fictional portrayals of some pretty awful (but not as awful as you're led to believe) torture scenes.

2
Banal, Cliched, Excruciating, Indulgent, Insipid

See it if You like horrendous musicals that are trite & borderline offensive. You don't care about losing 2 hours of your life to cringe-worthy crap.

Don't see it if You value your time & money. You're a Jewish person with any shred of self-respect. You prefer entertainment that isn't cringe-worthy crap.

Also This was one of the worst plays I've ever seen in my life. My playwrig... Read more Read less

85
During previews
Get the Boat
Soho/Tribeca
Absorbing, Great acting, Intense

See it if you appreciate good acting and characters grappling with complicated moral and personal issues.

Don't see it if You only like musicals or other light fare; you have an aversion to intense situations and/or conversations, especially between women.

55
Disappointing, Indulgent, Overrated, Slow

See it if You love John lithgow, but don’t have high expectations.

Don't see it if You are expecting to be very entertained by someone who is indeed a great actor, but whose show was disappointing.

97
America is Hard to See
Soho/Tribeca
Ambitious, Absorbing, Masterful, Must see, Relevant

See it if You are interested in important societal topics in America.

Don't see it if You are squeamish or triggered by the topic of pedophilia.

58
Ambitious, Clever, Disappointing, Great staging

See it if You enjoy edgy, unique theater and one person shows. The actor writer and performer is clearly very talented, but the writing was lacking.

Don't see it if Writing is more important to you than performance.

56
An Ordinary Muslim
East Village
Banal, Disappointing, Overrated, Relevant

See it if I don’t really recommend seeing this play.

Don't see it if I don’t really recommend seeing this play.

74
[PORTO]
Upper W Side
Clever, Disappointing, Intelligent, Overrated, Quirky

See it if You are interested and off and off off Broadway productions. And/or modern dating.

Don't see it if You prefer big Broadway production productions.