See it if you'd like to sit with one family's loving struggle with a mentally challenged member, presented with real-life situations that are honest.
Don't see it if you are looking for a quick take on the situation, as this play is bit long in telling the story because it is written from the heart.
See it if Family strains/struggle raising and living with a challenged adult/child.
Don't see it if Family drama. Not a happy go lucky play. Read more
See it if you are willing to sit through stretches of unremarkable dialog in order to experience several scenes of affecting drama.
Don't see it if you like your plays fast-paced & trimmed of fat. Read more
See it if You want a play that shows how people w/special needs were treated in the recent past.You want a standout performance from Stephanie Gould.
Don't see it if You prefer non-stagy dialogue. You want a coherent production: several choices didn't make sense: play set in '90s, set & music from '60s... Read more
See it if you want to see totally naturalistic acting depicting a touching, difficult situation. Ben Rosloff stands out in his debut.
Don't see it if you want something light, although there IS humor in the play. It is definitely entertaining. Read more
See it if You appreciate a well done family story.
Don't see it if You want comedy or music only.
See it if You'd like to see a debut play about a dysfunctional family with a brain-injured adult child. Sadly, this feels like a freshman effort.
Don't see it if OK w an interminable 1st act-acting & direction suffer from timing issues. 2nd act picks up towards the end. Most of the actors just yell. Read more
See it if You want to see a snap shot of a family with a disabled adult daughter and how everyone deals with that.
Don't see it if It was a mish mash of beautiful moments and over the top unsubtle yelling/drama. The entire first half felt like exposition.
“Karpen’s production stays true to the play’s traditional approach. The cast eschews actorly fireworks...The writing is unshowy at best, but can veer into awkwardness...there is a thin line between classic and passé. More of a problem is that the show is content to flit from setback to crisis without dwelling on any of them...Still, ‘Bernie and Mikey’s Trip to the Moon’ does elicit good will, if nothing else for its stubborn refusal to follow theatrical fashion."
"The production enjoys outstanding direction by Claire Karpen and a top-notch cast that brings Aiello's finely written story to life...These talented thespians are so authentic in their roles, you will think you are watching the scenes unfold in real time...'Bernie and Mikey's Trip to the Moon' is an inspirational human journey that is ideal for the holiday season."
"'Bernie and Mikey's Trip to the Moon' suffers from organizational problems. As Mikey's narrative comes to the fore, it leaves dangling...questions...Most of the time, however, the playwright doesn't pull his punches, especially in a sequence that makes clear how close to disaster the Vincolos reside. And he writes plenty of juicy scenes for his solid cast...Overall, Claire Karpen's smart, sensible direction keeps the action from straying into mawkishness or melodrama."
"On paper, the dialogue between the characters of this play's American-Italian family is sometimes two-dimensional and prone to stereotype, but Claire Karpen's evocative direction, combined with the actors' superlative efforts to flesh out their characters produces a well-formed story filled with sincerity, love and earnestness. The play is at its best telling the overarching tale, carefully doling out exposition, not answering every question asked and not attempting to plumb every plot line."
"A highly nuanced look at the ways caring for a severely disabled family member impacts one working-class household...An intense and often hilarious family drama. Zingers fly as the scene shifts between the family’s home and Mike’s bar...Perfectly staged and emotionally complex, the story, however familiar, rings true...What’s more, the story's framing makes it easy to empathize with each character’s exhaustion, terror, and frustration."
"A conventional, occasionally heartwarming, but sometimes unconvincing, kitchen-sink dramedy…'Bernie and Mikey' is not quite sure of how to focus its scattered moonbeams...Reminds us of the plethora of plays about people with cognitive or physical disabilities whose conditions create emotional and ethical dilemmas...'Bernie and Mikey's Trip to the Moon' is no 'Moonstruck' but it may shed just enough moonglow to light up your heart."
"A heartfelt piece about family, love, and how we take care of each other...The true strength of the story is in the relationship between brother Mikey and his sister, Bernie, and the story’s main journey towards Mikey’s realization that while he’d been trying to take care of his sister, he was the one who was relying on her care all along...I think Aiello’s characters are each crafted with love and invite the audience to fall in love with the Vincolo family."
"Scott Aiello’s play tells the story of an inadvertent step forward for Bernie triggering a purposeful one for Mikey. Writing is good, touching without being maudlin and periodically very original...Director Claire Karpen has so much feel for the world of her autistic characters, it’s easy to conjecture she’s reflecting personal experience. Kitchen sink directness brings the Vincolo family into fine focus."