William Wolf

William Wolf is a critic with Wolf Entertainment Guide. 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.

If you are this critic, please see the instructions on how to add reviews, update your profile, or make changes to your excerpts and scores.

Reviews (294)
Unexpected Joy
Midtown E
Wolf Entertainment Guide

“Everything clicks, with a believable plot, a cast of four who can really sing as well as act and a four-musician band that gives the show further oomph...Charmingly staged, and as the plot unfolds, it is laced with catchy musical numbers defining the characters...When Tamara, looking and acting so innocent, bursts into her...song with its sexy moves and lyrics, she is a show-stopper...There is considerable cleverness in the lyrics and the music in varied styles is consistently appealing.” Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"If you are after an in-depth look at the life of Donna Summer, you won’t get that in the sketchy book...But if you just want to hear a reprise of Donna Summer’s hits, you’ll get that big time via the superb voices of the three performers who play the disco star...The account of Summer’s turbulent life is shallow, with representative scenes dutifully interspersed...Perhaps the juke box musical genre isn’t the platform for deep exploration...It is the singing that counts." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"The result is spectacular...The plot gets complicated, of course, but what’s special about the play is the production...The visuals are enough to enthrall even the youngest in an audience. As for the story of working out the relationships, the issues and the dangers, the plot heavy on talk begins to wear some in Part 2, but sudden bursts of action liven things...Tiffany has done a great job in keeping most of the show eye-catching as well as trying to spin out the plot with clarity." Full Review

The Metromaniacs
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"A hilarious evening with a delightful cast...Ives has much fun with the dialogue delivered in couplets, including outrageously funny rhymes, with some contemporary references tossed into the hopper. One is rewarded by listening carefully and a desire to read the text may be aroused...Kahn understands the secret of good farce. He keeps the players dedicated to naturalness without hinting that they are trying to be funny...Ives’s take on this excavated play is thoroughly clever." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"A cast with great voices...Mueller makes an appealing Julie Jordan, Henry is impressive as Billy Bigelow...The show offers an abundance of visual delights in addition to the score and the musical high points. There are enough of those elements to override the work's corny trip to heaven and back. This 'Carousel' emphasizes the dark side of the story, as well as its fun and uplifting sides. The result is strong appeal for those who have never seen 'Carousel', as well as for those who have." Full Review

Miss You Like Hell
East Village
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"A touching, lively musical...The show taps strongly into contemporary concerns...The beauty of the show, enhanced by the lead performances, is how well the songs are integrated into the plot and how effectively supporting characters are brought into the story...deBessonet integrates story and music smoothly...Despite some weak spots here and there, this is a work with originality and heart and appearing just at the right time." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Mantello demonstrates that he understands the play perfectly and that he knows how to make the staging sharp, as well as knowing how to highlight the performances of his special cast. Thus this production is an excellent revival, and an example of theater at an exceptionally mature and entertaining level. Jackson is to be welcomed wholeheartedly, Metcalf and Pill also deserve high praise, and although Albee is gone, the cleverness and originality of his work is still with us." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Designed to appeal to fans of the film with the extra kick of a stage spectacle...I didn’t much care for the story in the film, and it is just as absurd here. But the production provides the necessary sparkle, and although the second act is too long...the ultimate result should please the 'Frozen' fans and those who head for hyped Broadway musicals...The pleasure afforded by the show, in addition to the overwhelming effects, partly lies in the singing by the leads." Full Review

The Stone Witch
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"The basic situation is not particularly credible, but the author has created characters who give the three-member cast a field day for attention-getting dramatics...Despite the acting, this all seems a bit ridiculous...This is not a creator of a 'War and Peace' about whom the play is talking. All of the great man stuff seems absurdly inflated, although Lauria rants and rages effectively as the character...I left admiring the cast trio but feeling less so about Bitterman’s tempestuous play." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Caplan comes across as a life force that keeps the story spinning, but the gentle characterizations of Chaim and Chaya set the stage for a sensitive look into their relationship and ensuing struggles to make a new life. It is almost too obvious to point to the timeliness of such a show...There is a lovely unity formed by the integration of music and acting, and the cast merits high commendation, as do the show’s creators." Full Review

Good for Otto
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"A wide-ranging exploration of mental problems with an excellent cast...Harris is excellent here as a dominating force in Rabe's unusual drama...Madigan is effective in illuminating the concerns the playwright raises...Rabe gives Abraham colorful lines and he is commanding...It is to Rabe's credit that he manages to cover so much territory, and it is to Elliott's credit that the various threads are illuminated clearly as they are woven into the play's overall psychiatric portrait." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Evidence of why the late Albee was such an effective playwright is dynamically on display in the juxtaposition of his 'The Zoo Story' and 'Homelife', which he decreed must be performed together...Albee's dialogue demonstrates emotional gaps, emphasized with well-timed silences...The production affords the perfect opportunity to enjoy and scrutinize his work anew, thanks to the insightful staging by Neugebauer and the sublime acting of her cast." Full Review

Party Face
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Colorful acting makes Mahon's play more watchable than one might expect from the work itself and the author's set-up...The play has its serious side...But the author also tries to turn the play into a comedy...The mix is odd and shallow, leaving it to cast members to bear the burden of providing amusement via their acting. The venerable Ms. Mills does very well in this respect...She can be very effective now at the age of 71. Mills earns her hearty welcome." Full Review

Fire and Air
East Village
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"McNally ventures into challenging territory in 'Fire and Air'...The subject matter is interesting whether or not one is informed about this era of dance history, and Hodge portrays Diaghilev charismatically, but often over the top...It is a stretch to make everything seem very Russian or Chekhov-like...The overall result is a production that has its fascinating and informative moments, but also is ultimately overwrought and not very deep." Full Review

Hindle Wakes
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"It is gratifying and fascinating to find a play taking controversial positions advanced for its time...Astutely directed by Gus Kaikkonen, it is convincingly acted...In Houghton’s play both women get to have their say, much to the consternation of the men...'Hindle Wakes' is very well constructed, and the acting proceeds without the kind of melodramatic histrionics that would have made it less realistic than in the civilized manner in which the action and dialogue unfold." Full Review

The Children
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

“Kirkwood’s ambitious play has a broad scope...The strength of the imaginative play lies in the interactions of the characters...We are challenged to decide what to make of the characters, their relationship, events of the past and forebodings for the future. Macdonald accents the play’s intensity and step-by-step revelations. Massive projections at the end drive home the central concept. Mostly, it is the expertise of the three cast members that keeps us glued.” Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"This is an astonishing looking scenic achievement...The undersea world of 'SpongeBob' teems with cartoon creatures, here brought to life by a superb cast put through entertaining confrontations and elaborate musical numbers. Yes, the book sags now and then but there is always an arresting sight of a new scenic wonder or lighting coup...A memorable example of the elaborate staging possible in the theater, and anyone interested at that aspect of showbiz should be sure to see it." Full Review

Hot Mess
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

“The situation at first seems rather shallow, but as the play progresses it becomes increasingly entertaining, largely because of the appealing acting...Although the play is on the thin side, the authors have provided an amusing set-up in the ultimate revelations, and Crumm and DeVito, abetted by the outrageousness of Molnar, do the rest under the snappy direction of Silverstein.” Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

“Either you go for this riff on the classic or you don’t...An onslaught of buffoonery by a cast that, as talented as it is, overacts to the hilt under the direction of Dehnert. Depending on one’s reaction, blame or praise can be aimed at playwright Hamill...The audience generally whooped it up with laughter...However, I had trouble joining in the revelry, as I am too engaged with the wit and meaning in Austen’s original to see the purpose of such no-holds-barred satire.” Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"A special theater treat awaits you...Yazbek’s poignant music and lyrics are so very expressive...The charm of the show follows the odd interaction, especially between Dina and Tewfiq, and all is presented with sensitive understatement. This is a musical that gets under the skin...The step by step getting to know one another that the musical depicts becomes a statement illustrated by the show’s overall magical quality." Full Review

Illyria
East Village
Wolf Entertainment Guide

“I interviewed the late producer Joe Papp many years ago and there was more energy in five minutes of our talk than is projected in the entire play...There is little in the thin, softly spoken play to indicate the dynamism that made Papp one of the theater’s most important producers...Nelson is probably the wrong writer to have tackled the drama about Papp and his colleagues...Nostalgia does peek through, but the result is mostly boring. Papp deserves better.” Full Review

The Last Match
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Ziegler and Upchurch rely on the aura of make-believe one can bring to the theater, plus the expertise of a top-notch cast of four...It is quite amazing how much excitement is achieved, and how much insight is communicated about all four individuals as well as about the sport...I do find that it could be trimmed some, as there tends to be repetition of some aspects...However, even as is, this is excellent, involving theater." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

“'Occupied Territories' attempts to deal with some of the issues unleashed by the war...The genius of the play lies in the staging...While the blending of loudly presented military action and what is going on in the household all these years later is very clever, it also becomes awkward at times...The authors have taken up the challenge of writing a meaningful play, and if the interaction doesn’t always work as smoothly as it should, the overall impact is dynamically and creatively there.” Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"The entire cast is exceedingly good...The production indulges in some less effective devices. This cuts uncomfortably into the realism that defines the rest of the play. However, those excursions are not enough to derail the overall effectiveness of the author’s incisive look into the situation in England...It is a welcome example of Priestley’s writing, and director Taichman has done a sharp job of staging that results in an impressive production of a play that merits a revival." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"While the staging is sometimes visually arresting, the meanings are hard to grasp...Davies is ultra dynamic and carries the production, which is consistently very busy as it races through the tale...There are merely nods to such ideas as expressed in the film version, but they are lost in the onslaught of masculine physicality that is highlighted in this staging. The result is loud and extremely busy without emphasizing what 'A Clockwork Orange' is really all about." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"What you will get is a helping of Ayckbourn’s gift for creating amusing and sometimes poignant characters and putting them in odd situations that can be entertaining as well as meaningful...An excellent, versatile six-member cast...While it is not the best among the 80 or so plays Ayckbourn has written, it does have the sort of entertaining ingredients, including witty and sometimes broad comedy, and penetrating dialogue that one so often finds in his work." Full Review

Travesties
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"A rollicking good time with an intellectual perspective wrapped in theater of the absurd...There are serious observations and playful ones, with much hilarity involved and accented under the broad direction by Patrick Marber...Stoppard is a master at interweaving his characters, much to our amusement...The historical and literary frolicking doesn’t mask the underlying seriousness...Culture is a major force meant to elevate humankind and give voice to genius." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"It is glorious interpretation of the Lerner-Loewe musical, one of the greatest of the genre, on so many counts. It is both an eyeful and an earful, with fabulous sets and costumes and beguiling singing...Sher deserves unstinting praise for his direction...It is an up-to-date example of striving for and achieving perfection in reviving a musical theater classic, or for that matter, the staging of any Broadway show—period." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"The excellent actors make the most of McPherson's humor while we gradually learn about the pasts of the characters...To Broderick's credit he keeps his portrayal low key, making his dramatic pronouncement effective when he raises his voice like a thunderclap...O'Reilly keeps the banter intense, the pace fluid and gives the actors full rein to make the most of their characterizations...Isn't a very deep play, but it sure is an arresting one, especially as staged in this revival." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"The plot is as dippy and predicable as ever, although Tina Fey’s book includes lots of laugh lines, and Jeff Richmond’s music and Nell Benjamin’s lyrics provide the appealing cast members with opportunity to score big in the singing department. Casey Nicholaw’s high-speed direction and rapid-fire choreography avoid lulls...Even a skeptic glad to be far removed from the doings depicted can admire the cast and the staging alive with Broadway expertise." Full Review

Lobby Hero
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"'An important play for our time, and it is getting a superb production with the penetrating direction and the piercing acting by four splendid players. Each of the characters comes vividly alive and believable as they are brought together amid personal challenges...How each reacts and counter-reacts is at the core of the play...What makes the play so effective that the characters become so very life-like that by the end of the evening we feel we really know them." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Impressive performances under the equally impressive and inventive direction by Marianne Elliott...Amazingly, while dealing with situations of the utmost seriousness, Kushner injects massive humor along the way, and the combination works splendidly, making the work often very funny as well as penetrating and upsetting. The play offers a bonanza for actors, and this cast comes through admirably...A revival to be cherished, and missing it would certainly leave a gap in one’s theatergoing." Full Review

Babette’s Feast
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"It is, of course, not very possible to do on stage what can be shown on film with respect to the creation of a mouth-watering feast. What does come across effectively in this production is the religious austerity of the 19th century Protestant community...Despite all of the effort, the sensuousness so essential to the concept is not there on stage as it was on film even though the production is very faithful to Dinesen. But credit the company with a worthy try that holds our interest." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"The book wouldn’t win any prize for sophistication, but it is constructed to work as a showcase for Buffet’s music and lyrics, and that’s the point of it all. How you respond to the show may have a good deal to do with how you react to Buffet’s numbers, which in his pop-folk style tend to affably stress fun in life...Fortunately, an excellent cast is there to embody the Buffet spirit...A lot of plot to accommodate—but it works to highlight the barrage of Buffet songs." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"These really are little Irish masterpieces, enacted by an excellent cast and crisply directed...'The Rising of the Moon'...Sheds light on issues of human relationships and moral principles. It is a very compelling piece...'Riders to the Sea'...One is emotionally pierced by Donnelly's outstanding performance...Moore directs with the utmost simplicity that brings out the essence of the writing without unnecessary flourishes. The result is an experience well worth the visit." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"A lively treat, thanks to an excellent, larger-than-usual cast and the entertaining qualities of the show itself. It adds up to a a welcome experience of rediscovery and pure fun...Some of the book is a stretch, but that is redeemed by plenty of funny lines, appealing romance, and the smart array of songs that Styne and his lyricists provided. As usual, The York has assembled a superb cast to bring the show to new life...The highlights come from this very engaged cast." Full Review

Kings
East Village
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Davis does an excellent job in giving Millsap a strong, no-holds-barred principled position...The plot gets complicated when Millsap decides to challenge Senator McDowell, played impressively by Grenier...The play is heavy on discourse, and Kail strives for clarity...'Kings,' although at times rather diffuse, succeeds in taking us into the whirl of politics, maneuvering and pressures and provides insights that can be useful in thinking about what is going on today." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

“A bold and brave solo performance…Ensler has dug deeply into her personal experiences...There is a stretch in trying to tie the personal problem of her cancer with world problems...The link is the basis of her play, and one has to make the leap with her in order to appreciate her concept...Yet the passion in Ensler’s performance glows with sincerity and dynamism…It takes talent and excellent direction to hold one’s attention, which Ensler mostly does.” Full Review

Hallelujah, Baby!
Midtown E
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"There are various reasons to see the York Theatre Company’s concert-style revival...A major one is the smashing performance by Stephanie Umoh...Seeing her reconfirms my enthusiasm for her artistry...The show itself has an excellent score...It is a work that definitely merits a fresh look...The book, although sometimes a bit clunky, cleverly spans decades...The overall direction is by Gerry McIntyre, who deserves credit for whipping the musical into shape with about a week’s rehearsal." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

“The music of Handel gives the play bursts of beauty via the splendid voice of Davies and his accompanying musicians...The playwright excels in giving Rylance lines that can be poetic, humorous, and also indicative of his strange, wandering mind...Rylance is expert at casting revealing glances, visually indicating vapidity, or exhibiting fascination with Farinelli...The entire production is a visual and aural triumph, with Rylance reigning as the central attraction.” Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

“A strange but often interesting play...The weaving of characters into the different periods can be confusing even though the actors are exceedingly good...Sardelli handles moments of intense conversation with skill...Still, there is something lacking in what the author has tried to do...One might yearn to learn more about Babel with less skipping around to make connections. Ideas clash, and the result is more of an uneasy mix than the searing look at what happened to Babel." Full Review

Downtown Race Riot
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"The only thing functional, apart from the acting quality, in this dull look at a dysfunctional family and equally screwed up friends is the apartment set...We don’t actually get to see the riot, which at least would enliven the play...The focus is primarily on the mostly uninteresting characters...For all of the sincere strivings of the fine cast members, the play doesn’t pack the strength needed to keep an audience in its grip. It rambles along for 90 minutes." Full Review

20th Century Blues
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Reflects women in the face of how they are unjustly regarded in society. The portraits are effective, as the cast members are all excellent in their delineation of what is happening in their lives. The writing is crisp, and yet there is insufficient drama to make the work more dynamic. But what there is impresses, and one comes away with more awareness of what women go through and how they are affected by a society that prizes youth and beauty and instills fear of becoming over the hill." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"One of the funniest shows in town...The working of family into the show provides the chance for sentiment to embellish the comedy. Sometimes that slows things down a bit, but it injects heart into what Leguizamo is seriously dispensing beneath all of the hilarity. And hilarity is the right word, for Leguizamo is a master of timing, physical comedy...and overall cleverness...In this show he rises majestically above what I have seen him achieve previously." Full Review

Office Hour
East Village
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"I have some quarrel with the way the playwright and director toy with the audience via a series of shocks. But, abetted by a razor-sharp cast, the play is hot stuff...The stakes, both in imagination and in reality, escalate as the play charges forward without intermission, and the whole problem of chilling violence that we see in the daily headlines is conceptually addressed...The playwright, director, and cast confront this head-on with such intensity that one is glued to the stage." Full Review

M. Butterfly
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

“No matter how good the acting, no matter that it is based on a real story, and no matter how attractive director Taymor tries to make the staging, one is hard-pressed to imagine that a man could be sleeping with another man for many years and still think he’s a woman...The author has tried to make the sexuality of the yarn more believable...But all of the trappings still make it tough to accept...The play has a tall wall to scale.” Full Review

The Portuguese Kid
Midtown W
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Shanley’s comedy...offers a certain amount of laugh opportunity, not from great writing, but as a vehicle for a good cast who can mine the most out of lines and situations even when the plot becomes rather limp...Shanley’s writing is only intermittently funny along the way, but his cast members consistently come to the rescue as they make the most of everything they are given and are an entertaining lot...Overall this is only a somewhat diverting time in the theater." Full Review

The Home Place
Chelsea
Wolf Entertainment Guide

“A collection of colorful performers under the intelligent command of director Charlotte Moore...’The Home Place’ may not be one of playwright Friel’s greatest plays, but it succeeds in delineating part of an era with its controversies, as well as presenting flesh and blood characters attempting to sort out their lives. And director Moore exhibits keen understanding of the play and an ability to effectively communicate its essence." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"Rattling off Shakespearean dialogue as if in a speed-talking contest? That’s just too much of a leap, and apart from occasional laughs and one scene that takes hold emotionally for a short spell, this interpretation is a misguided exercise. That doesn’t mean that the cast isn’t worthy. Working against the text, the actors do their best to interpret the zany plot...They seem to be at home with their top-speed discourse. Of course, this thoroughly vitiates the beauty of Shakespeare’s language." Full Review

Tiny Beautiful Things
East Village
Wolf Entertainment Guide

"With a compelling stage presence, Vardalos portrays Sugar...Vardalos puts plenty of feeling and sincerity into Sugar’s personal responses. Occasionally the back-and-forth becomes a bit wearisome, as all of the inquiries aren’t dealing with momentous problems, but there are also significantly poignant moments...The content runs the gamut of human experience and difficulties." Full Review