TallErnie

Sunnyside | 35-49 | Male
About:  Former Midwesterner who moved to NYC to experience as much culture as I could. I see a few plays a week and also enjoy the odd movie, museum, or storytelling event.
Reviews (193)
80
Rigoletto
Upper W Side
Riveting, Enchanting, Great singing, Great staging
November 18th, 2022

See it if It's got maybe the best aria ever (La donna è mobile), a gorgeous moving stage, and a female conductor. The parts are all well done.

Don't see it if My only issue is with the writing; the worst people here never get their comeuppance, and I'm not sold on how everyone loves the Duke.

86
La Traviata
Upper W Side
Intelligent, Great singing, Exquisite, Enchanting
November 18th, 2022

See it if A first rate production of one of the best operas. It's light and fun and then suddenly it's infuriating and deeply, wonderfully sad.

Don't see it if It's not as feminist as it could be and the main plot point that makes it so tragic isn't ever REALLY explained. But it's still fantastic.

90
Tosca
Upper W Side
Must see, Great writing, Great staging, Great singing, Exquisite
November 18th, 2022

See it if I'm hardly an opera expert, though I hope to get there, but this is the best opera I've ever seen. It's lovely and would be a good 1st opera

Don't see it if It's sad and long, because of COURSE it is, but unless you hate opera, this is pretty much as good as it gets.

79
During previews
The Rat Trap
Midtown W
Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting, Clever, Absorbing
November 17th, 2022

See it if It feels remarkably modern and feminist. There's humor here; more witty/New Yorker cartoon than guffawish. Not QUITE great, but very close.

Don't see it if Some of the accents weren't great and there's a lot of important dialog; you need to pay attention to this play, but it's worth the work.

79
Intelligent, Great writing, Great staging, Funny, Clever
November 10th, 2022

See it if Being meta is a tough tightrope act. This mostly makes it work, except for the last 15 min. Nice to see such a singular voice on Broadway.

Don't see it if It's got a lot of descriptions of gay sex and some racist language. I didn't feel it stuck the landing, but it's wildly funny &worth seeing.

82
Intense, Funny, Great acting, Great writing, Great staging
November 2nd, 2022

See it if It's a curse-filled, violent, confusing mess, in the best way. It's a Mamet play, & a good one. The acting was even better than the writing

Don't see it if It's a curse-filled, violent, confusing mess. It's not for everyone, but if you think you'll dig it, you're almost certainly right.

75
Fluffy, Funny, Entertaining
November 2nd, 2022

See it if Billy Crystal is at his most Billy Crystalline here. The play is entertaining and old-fashioned on purpose. The songs? Can't remember a one.

Don't see it if I'm not sure who this was for; it feels like something from the 50s, but with cursing. Great acting. It almost seems designed to confuse.

73
Enchanting, Absorbing, Overrated, Great singing, Great staging
November 2nd, 2022

See it if The stage is impressive. The music isn't typical staid Broadway music. The story has been a classic for 1000s of years. But it's just ok.

Don't see it if See below; basically, this was a middle of the road Broadway musical experience. Nothing bad really, but nothing amazing except the staging.

Also This fell a little flat for me. Maybe it's because there were 4 unders... Read more Read less

94
Shared Sentences
East Village
Profound, Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting, Exquisite
October 29th, 2022

See it if 6 fully realized characters, fleshed out expertly through short vignettes. I only spent 95 min w/them, but I knew & adored them by the end.

Don't see it if The best straight play I've seen this year. I can't think of a reason to not see it. I was blown away. I suspect you'll be too.

76
During previews
Absorbing, Dated, Great writing, Great staging, Ambitious
October 29th, 2022

See it if It's a good cast doing great-adjacent material on a fantastic set. There's a reason people keep doing Albee.

Don't see it if It feels of a piece with Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, so if you hate that (or drunken WASPs being mean to each other), avoid.

73
During previews
Funny, Profound, Intelligent
October 25th, 2022

See it if He's charming and a decent storyteller. It's a one man show that runs over 2 hours but doesn't feel long.

Don't see it if It's basically a recited memoir. The stories are (mostly) interesting, but it's not a play. And there's some sexual assault content.

80
During previews
Intense, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing
October 7th, 2022

See it if Some 2 handers feel thin, but this one feels full and complex. I really grew to know (if not like) the brothers. The acting is top-notch.

Don't see it if I'm not sure how I'm supposed to feel about the play after seeing it. It's very well-constructed, but I guess I'm unsure what the point was.

84
During previews
Slow, Relevant, Profound, Great acting, Absorbing
October 7th, 2022

See it if I had no idea a play from 1949 would feel so fresh and hit so hard. It feels very of the moment. Everyone in it is great.

Don't see it if It's long. VERY long. I didn't mind, but you might. Its treatment of mental illness was progressive at the time but is less so now.

65
During previews
Peerless
Midtown E
Intense, Edgy, Great staging, Dated, Ambitious
October 7th, 2022

See it if There's the bones of something here, but it's not there yet. It's an interesting take on Macbeth, but it feels half-done somehow.

Don't see it if It's VERY dark and more than a little ableist. Reverse karma is a play here: the worst people have the best outcomes and vice versa.

78
Los Otros
Midtown W
Relevant, Resonant, Great staging, Great acting
September 29th, 2022

See it if It deals w/aspects of the Mex-American experience through (pretty good) song. There's a good story in it, too; this isn't dry ruminations.

Don't see it if It's a mostly-sung 2-hander. If small casts, minimal staging (just a few bits of furniture), or sung plays aren't your thing, give it a miss

95
Great singing, Funny, Delightful, Clever, Absorbing
September 29th, 2022

See it if This is what Broadway is for. The movie was pretty but I found it sort of meh; this is minimally staged and phenomenal. It LIVES on stage.

Don't see it if Honestly, unless you just hate Sondheim or musicals, you should see this. I lack enough space for the superlatives this deserves.

73
During previews
Funny, Entertaining, Absorbing
August 16th, 2022

See it if If you like Colin on Who's Line, you'll enjoy this. The hypnosis doesn't really add much to it, other than a bit of extra randomness.

Don't see it if It's improv; you know if you'll like it or not.

70
Great acting, Disappointing, Confusing
August 4th, 2022

See it if You love Macbeth & physically active plays; the choreography is well done & the acting first rate. Best thought of as a highlight reel, tho.

Don't see it if You don't know Macbeth back to front - huge swathes of plot are cut entirely or are only briefly mentioned. Newbies WILL be confused.

78
The Panic of '29
Midtown E
Ambitious, Funny, Confusing, Clever
August 2nd, 2022

See it if It's ALMOST but not a lot of things (musical, social commentary, drama, comedy), but a thing it ALWAYS is is entertaining. Great songs, tho.

Don't see it if It's a bit of a mess; all the things it wants to be flow together reasonably well, but not seamlessly. It needs more focus to be great.

75
Macbeth (Broadway)
Midtown W
Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Great staging
July 28th, 2022

See it if It's well acted. Special shout out to Gaelynn Lea; with such minimal staging, her music had to do a LOT of mood setting and did so admirably

Don't see it if There's a lot of doubling, which can be confusing. The staging isn't totally minimal, but it's at high school production level.

75
Intelligent, Great acting
May 31st, 2022

See it if The acting is top-notch, and the characters are fully realized enough that I left the theater angry at one of them.

Don't see it if It has a lot of time jumps, and the staging is INTENSELY bare bones (3 chairs).

75
Delightful, Clever, Funny
April 23rd, 2022

See it if Funny and touching stories backing funny & touching songs. Something here for everyone, Jewish or not.

Don't see it if It's a cabaret, not a play. The songs are all good, but some of them are longer than they need to be.

80
During previews
Profound, Relevant, Intelligent, Edgy, Dizzying
April 18th, 2022

See it if It's a brilliant, frequently funny, often sad, well danced/acted view of the problems of and sisterhood among Black women.

Don't see it if It's INTENSE. While the overall message is positive, it was a little emotionally overwhelming. Trigger warning: sexual assault & child harm.

90
Company (Broadway)
Midtown W
Great staging, Great acting, Great singing, Funny, Clever
April 14th, 2022

See it if Patti LuPone. It's got one of the most innovative sets I've ever seen & it's funny & well-acted throughout. But her song is worth full price

Don't see it if I can't think of any reason, unless you're a slavish fan of the original; it's the rare update that feels RIGHT.

79
Romantic, Great acting, Great staging, Funny
April 14th, 2022

See it if It's a lot of fun with a clever way to show the passage of 80 or so years. Well acted and VERY funny; even people meh on theater would like.

Don't see it if Because of how quickly it moves, you don't get to spend a lot of time with the consequences of new developments. But It doesn't feel rushed.

79
Clyde's (Broadway)
Midtown W
Relevant, Quirky, Great acting
January 16th, 2022

See it if The acting is FANTASTIC. The staging is very good. It's about 5 broken people, only some of whom are trying to better themselves.

Don't see it if The writing, while good, isn't up to the level of the acting. The actors all sell the material, but they HAVE to carry it at a few points.

90
WIT
East Village
Intense, Riveting, Clever, Great writing, Absorbing
January 8th, 2022

See it if It's a bare bones production that uses AV elements to gear effect. It's a great staging of a great play.

Don't see it if It's tough subject matter, but manages to not be depressing until the very end.

79
For a previous production
A Sherlock Carol
Midtown W
Absorbing, Entertaining, Funny, Delightful
November 13th, 2021

See it if You like Sherlock Holmes, A Christmas Carol, or surprisingly nuanced portraits of PTSD. It's a bit of a delight and worth your time.

Don't see it if You need major drama/profundity; this is an airy thing, but a very fun one. I can't imagine hating it unless you detest the Great Detective.

75
Dana H. (Broadway)
Midtown W
Riveting, Great staging, Intense, Absorbing
October 27th, 2021

See it if It's buzzy for a reason; this is a unique experience. It's 90 minutes that feel like 30 in a good way.

Don't see it if It has descriptions of assault. The actress is fantastic, but she's also lip syncing to recordings of someone else's words.

90
Thought-provoking, Funny, Absorbing
October 22nd, 2021

See it if I was deeply dubious that an acted FBI transcript would be entertaining, but it's one of the best things I've ever seen on Broadway.

Don't see it if Honestly, the only quibble I have with it is it's shorter than most Broadway shows. And if you dislike police questioning, avoid.

73
Thought-provoking, Intense, Absorbing
October 17th, 2021

See it if It's impressively acted. It'll make you think. The 90 minutes don't drag. This is a good show that should be a great one but somehow isn't.

Don't see it if The staging is very minimal. The storyline meanders. It raises a lot of questions that it doesn't seem interested in answering.

39
The Sickness
Soho/Tribeca
Slow, Excruciating, Disappointing, Confusing, Banal
February 28th, 2020

See it if Don't. It seems to be trying to maybe show what junk time is like: confusing/repetitive/boring/poorly lit/semi-nonsensical. The cast is ok,

Don't see it if the play isn't - it's 80 min that feels like 200. Not enjoyable in any way & not unenjoyable in a way that you'll appreciate. A big misfire

90
About Love
East Village
Great singing, Great acting, Delightful, Enchanting, Clever
February 25th, 2020

See it if It's almost a fairy tale. Everyone in it impresses. The staging is minimal but effective, the story is great, the music suits the plot.

Don't see it if It's not wholly happy, but it's a Russian story, so you knew that, right? You should see this; it's remarkably good.

73
During previews
Rules of Desire
Midtown W
Intense, Entertaining, Edgy, Absorbing
February 21st, 2020

See it if My gf & I saw this. We both agreed that we liked it, but that it was disturbing. The most interesting of the 3 characters is a legit monster

Don't see it if but a compelling one. There's talk of sexual violence & it's a scary premise. I'm usually triggered by this, but wasn't here. Worth seeing.

79
Look Back In Anger
East Village
Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting
February 18th, 2020

See it if It's a classic for a reason. The cast are uniformly good, the writing is top-notch, and the staging is decent.

Don't see it if There's some cursing and infidelity, and it's not exactly a HAPPY play, but it's worth the seeing.

74
Slow, Funny, Entertaining
February 14th, 2020

See it if It's funny. It's a little long. The cast are all having a blast, and that's infectious. There are video elements that enhance the experience

Don't see it if rather than detracting from it. It's worth your time, but it's probably not going to be the best play you see this year.

67
Tape
West Village
Confusing, Thought-provoking, Slow, Relevant
February 10th, 2020

See it if There's something here, but it isn't quite ready for primetime. It's not bad, but you probably don't need to see it.

Don't see it if It features a cassette tape purchased at K-Mart as a plot point & is set in 2020, so it takes a lot of suspension of disbelief.

71
During previews
Ambitious, Confusing, Entertaining
February 6th, 2020

See it if It's a fine production, but an inessential one. And they cut "I Feel Pretty." I'm glad I saw it, but I don't exactly recommend it.

Don't see it if There are many scenes that occur offstage & are only seen via projected camera-distracting. It's tough to tell the gangs apart in the rumble

71
Soul Survivor
Greenwich V
Confusing, Quirky, Great acting, Funny
January 23rd, 2020

See it if It's funny. It's pretty well written but sort of falls apart in the last 15 min. It's a young cast having a lot of infectious fun.

Don't see it if There's male nudity, there's a lot of cursing, there's some violence & gore, & it needs a bit of a rewrite. Worth seeing, but not essential.

73
Great acting, Funny, Dated, Entertaining
January 15th, 2020

See it if The cast are all very good. Better than the story, really.

Don't see it if It feels like a 1930's B picture (with some cursing thrown in) - it's fun but not essential viewing.

65
Great writing, Ambitious
January 15th, 2020

See it if Bit of a swing and a miss - they're trying to do something new (audience chooses who plays what role, though I think it was decided already)

Don't see it if It's...fine. It's well enough acted and staged, but you've seen better Midsummers. splitting the woods/mechanicals scenes didn't work for me

90
During previews
Great writing, Great acting, Entertaining, Clever, Absorbing
January 4th, 2020

See it if You like intense procedurals. You like diverse casts. Or plays about racial justice. Or military plays. Honestly: just go see it; it's great

Don't see it if There's some cursing and a few gunshots. Otherwise this is well worth your time.

45
Intense, Indulgent, Ambitious, Disappointing, Confusing
January 4th, 2020

See it if It's sort of like if the Shining starred cell phones and was awful. The only positive I have is that the staging was sort of impressive.

Don't see it if It's a mess; loud, confusing, & projected onto screens by cameras that can't adjust to shooting bright cell phones. It tries hard. And fails

74
Great singing, Entertaining
December 26th, 2019

See it if It's the Cole Porter songbook, performed in a fun, New Orleansy sort of way.

Don't see it if You've heard Sinatra, Ella, & every other damn singer sing these songs. Harry's great, but it's tough to give a new take to them.

75
Disturbing, Resonant, Relevant, Ambitious, Great writing
December 26th, 2019

See it if It examines power and gender dynamics in mixed race couples in a way that I've never seen addressed before. It's got a fantastic monologue.

Don't see it if There are depictions of sexual violence and relationship breakdowns that *I* found very very difficult to watch. YMMV. It's very good.

80
Absorbing, Funny, Entertaining, Enchanting
December 15th, 2019

See it if It's professional magic. If you like that sort of thing, this is the sort of thing you'll like. Many different kinds of magic are on display

Don't see it if You don't like magic? It's not must-see, but it's a very fun evening.

83
Orpheus & Eurydice
Soho/Tribeca
Intelligent, Enchanting, Delightful, Clever
December 15th, 2019

See it if It's an ancient tragedy rewritten for modern times. It's well-written and acted by a cast having the time of their lives. Go see it.

Don't see it if You don't like Bruce Springsteen songs or shows with the most minimal of minimal staging. Otherwise this is one to see.

67
Slow, Quirky, Intelligent
December 10th, 2019

See it if Boy is this one tough to write. Dandy really puts his all into this, but it just didn't work for me. It's well-thought out & fervently acted

Don't see it if but he has sort of an insecure ringmaster affect to his voice that was off-putting. And the story was weird but not interesting. Not for me

90
For a previous production
Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Enchanting, Absorbing
November 23rd, 2019

See it if Each half works as an independent play, but they REALLY need to be seen together. Fun special effects, good story; if you like HP, see it.

Don't see it if There are a couple plot points that don't go anywhere, but it just works. Only don't see it if you don't like fantasy.

90
Nutcracker Rouge
Brooklyn
Great singing, Exquisite, Entertaining, Enchanting, Absorbing
November 18th, 2019

See it if It's truly fantastic burlesque - the singing, dancing, juggling, aerial work, etc are all top drawer. It's delightful start to finish.

Don't see it if You don't like burlesque or bawdy humor. You need your Nutcracker to be traditional; this very much isn't.