See it if you enjoy plays about dating & relationships among modern Muslims in today's USA, like 2-handers & intense confrontations
Don't see it if don't like 2-character plays or subjects about young American Muslims' professional ambitions, put off by the "Women's Project" label
See it if Multiple conflicts: modern/tradition practicing Islam, research professor/popular fiction writer, sexual tension, Muslim terrorism/peaceful.
Don't see it if You aren’t interested in cultural and religious conflicts facing Muslims in America and their portrayal in media.
See it if like me, Adrienne Campbell-Holt is one of your favorite directors. When I see her name attached, I just go, knowing it will be worthwhile.
Don't see it if you unfortunately missed your chance.
See it if two great actors entering into an intense romance affected by their cultural identities
Don't see it if you're looking for a traditional love story
See it if you would like to see a great cultural representation of Muslim-Americans that diverts from the usual cliches. Great acting.
Don't see it if you don't like issue plays or two hander plays. You are looking for something family friendly.
See it if Sexy academic idealistic muslim gal seduces sexy commercial egotistic muslim guy. Sparks fly. Can they grow from their differences?
Don't see it if Their antagonism hardly ever abates. They state their respective values on the portrayal of Muslims in western media, then keep arguing.
See it if you can. This play is only 90 minutes but it packs in ideas upon ideas upon ideas, while still being a compelling theatrical experience.
Don't see it if you'd be frustrated by a show whose idea is slightly better than its execution (in terms of dialogue and in terms of the performers).
See it if you're interested in getting a rare theatrical glimpse into two Muslims' lives, their viewpoints, and how they interact.
Don't see it if you do not like philosophical dialogue (interspersed with some very sexy onstage actions).
“Smart, sexy and not entirely satisfying....Ms. Mirza is a sharp writer and a savvy thinker...But too often Layla and Imran feel like mouthpieces for the larger arguments. When the actors really sell the repartee, those mouths can be enough...As the badinage sputters, though, the play wilts...Still, it’s nice to see a play that invites Muslim characters to be just as mouthy and sexy and messy as characters of any other denomination.”
"Layla and Imran’s hookup-turned-romance is fun to watch. But ultimately, 'Hatef**k' is another example of a genre that has become too familiar: The 'play about art,' in which well-educated people debate the role and responsibility of the artist in society. Granted, it’s an important debate, especially when the artist is a member of an often-stigmatized group. But one can’t help feeling that, like Imran and Layla, the play is using that issue to avoid some deeper and messier questions."
"Ladnier and Ramamurthy wield Mirza's sharp writing like two Olympic fencers brandishing their foils. They begin to stumble over their lines, however, as the plot progresses and Mirza becomes bogged down in the play's real purpose: an argument over the representation of Muslims in popular culture...The play is half-salvaged by Adrienne Campbell-Holt's steamy staging, which emphasizes the raw sexuality of the two performers."
"There’s stinging dialogue, solid construction and high powers of observation that accurately render the fractious literary milieu...The characters are impeccably detailed and behave so realistically, causing the possible dynamic for the viewer of siding with one over the other...Director Adrienne Campbell-Holt’s propulsive staging injects eroticism, clarity and focus, all at a brisk pace, unifying the play’s suspenseful elements with its eloquent rhetorical portions."
"Adrienne Campbell-Holt directs this non-stop verbal and emotional battle with finesse. Kavi Ladnier and Sendhil Ramamurthy are superb in their constantly guarded love-hating. I am in awe of their efforts in this play, which is such a nuanced look at living in America while Muslim. This is an excellent co-production of Colt Coeur and WP Theater."
"A well-crafted two-hander in any season...Passions are heightened with every clever turn-of-phrase until the two head for the bedroom to work off the steam...Mirza's dialogue ripples with energy sprinkled with humor and an occasional gut punch. Using her two beautifully defined creations, she can go deep as well as broad, coming to conclusions that are enlightening as well as troubling...Director Adrienne Campbell-Holt has been blessed with a terrific cast as well as script."
"The play is solid, but I think Adrienne Campbell-Holt’s direction could have more nuance. High pitched antagonism is not sufficiently interesting a dynamic to keep an audience going for 90 minutes. At some point you realize nothing is ever going to change...I also think the writing bears a bit of scrutiny, to make the piece less a polemic and focus more on the actual relationship – however flawed – these two people are allegedly trying to create."
"The strains of rom com and intellectual rigor...don’t always harmonize, and sometimes the schematics of the philosophical argument trip up the piece as much as the schematics of the romance plot, but it’s bracing and engaging throughout, energized by two strong performers with chemistry to spare...The play’s laser focus is both weakness and strength...The absence of exposition is bright and refreshing, but we end up knowing almost nothing about these people."