Of Good Stock
Closed 2h 15m
Of Good Stock
75

Of Good Stock NYC Reviews and Tickets

75%
(9 Reviews)
Positive
89%
Mixed
11%
Negative
0%
Members say
Funny, Great acting, Entertaining, Delightful, Slow

About the Show

The final show of Manhattan Theatre Club's 2014-15 season, Melissa Ross' new play starring Alicia Silverstone is about the fun and dysfunction of that thing we call family.

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Member Reviews (9)

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55
Banal, Disappointing, Annoying, Insipid, Boring

See it if you want to gawk at Silverstone. The script was truly awful. Nothing funny, insightful, or believable to be found. No strong acting, either

Don't see it if idiotic behavior drives you crazy. This play is chock-full of idiotic behavior. The word "Good" does not deserve to be in the title. Read more

70
Funny, Entertaining, Great acting, Relevant

See it if Well written story. Well acted. Touching and funny.

Don't see it if you don't care that much about women's stories.

Critic Reviews (32)

The New York Times
June 30th, 2015

"'Of Good Stock,' actually feels like a better-than-average chick flick — well acted, smoothly paced, occasionally touching and, for those who indulge in such forms of reassurance, as comforting as a quart of mint chocolate chip ice cream, eaten straight from the container...Some of the dialogue here could slide easily into pretty much any dysfunctional family sitcom of the last decade or so...Otherwise, you laugh, you cry, you yawn. There’s nothing taxing or revelatory about 'Of Good Stock'.”
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Time Out New York
June 30th, 2015

"In 'Of Good Stock', directed by Lynne Meadow for MTC, rising writer Melissa Ross mixes in some laughs and insight, but overdoes it on the tears, clichés and whining...The play looks great; you may wish you could live in Santo Loquasto’s fancy rotating beachside home set. But although it’s presented in a designer package, 'Of Good Stock' is off-the-rack family dysfunction."
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The Hollywood Reporter
June 30th, 2015

"Has a distressing air of familiarity in its depiction of a trio of squabbling siblings whose respective emotional issues are endlessly and loudly expressed. It may be cathartic for the characters, but for the audience, not so much...The evening is not always as painful as it sounds. Ross displays a flair for writing sharply funny dialogue, and the performances are generally fine, although Silverstone overdoes her character's narcissistic traits."
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Entertainment Weekly
June 30th, 2015

"Playwright Ross’ quips give 'Of Good Stock' the engaging feel of a good sitcom, though the jokes are particularly suited to an NYC audience... It is only during the sisters’ climactic airing-of-the-grievances stretch where the play begins to feel longer than its breezy two hours. (Silverstone’s eventual meltdown may put a lump in your throat as it crescendos, but the scene drags on far too long.) Still, the skilled performers elevate a potentially 'Stock' setup to a relatable and thoroughly entertaining experience."
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Variety
June 30th, 2015

"Hell is spending a weekend with the three irritating Stockton sisters who strut and fret in Melissa Ross’s busy but fruitless family drama, 'Of Good Stock.' Director Lynne Meadow’s production is smartly cast and easy on the eye. But everyone in this unpleasant family of narcissists is consumed with herself, and their histrionic posturing is exhausting."
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Deadline
July 1st, 2015

"Chekhov meets Beth Henley in 'Of Good Stock', Melissa Ross’ melodramedy...With its tiresome jokes, Ross’ play takes way too much digging to unearth an underlying richness...The best thing about 'Of Good Stock' is the ending, which, it turns out, is no ending at all. It seems to end in mid-sentence, or mid-action, which I took to be the attitude of a realist-optimist. A sweet touch."
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New York Post
June 30th, 2015

"An overwritten-yet-undercooked show where emotions are eclipsed by a ridiculously intricate rotating set...Half the dialogue feels as if it’d been cooked up by a 60-year-old trying hard to sound hip rather than by an actual young woman three years out of Juilliard...Sadly, these misfires bury the play’s genuine kernels of gravitas...The actors are the production’s saving grace."
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New York Daily News
June 30th, 2015

"Tinny and hollow comedy...This work feels undercooked and tolls with phony baloney...There’s only so much director Lynne Meadow can do when the script falters. She keeps the pacing up and wraps the show in handsome style. That’s become a recurring Manhattan Theatre Club hallmark — productions that look better than they play."
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AM New York
June 30th, 2015

"If there is little plot to speak of besides sitcom-style scenes of confrontation, bonding and heavy drinking, the play does provide full portraits of the characters...The production features spirited performances all around, a detailed revolving set and quite a few cute and touching moments, but it doesn't quite overcome the play's light-as-a-feather flimsiness and predictability."
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Theatermania
June 30th, 2015

"With little plot to speak of in Ross' slice-of-life play, the story turns on the relationships that fluctuate within it. As such, director Lynne Meadow makes a science of each, building a world that feels effortlessly realistic while also artistically cohesive...Ross does not reinvent the wheel with her portrayal of sisterly camaraderie, but as the women share a profanity-laden catharsis over a bottle of scotch, you have to feel glad that this particular wheel was in stock."
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Lighting & Sound America
July 2nd, 2015

"Borrows every trick in the dysfunctional family comedy playbook...A generic trio of neurotic sisters and set them to squabbling in allegedly hilarious fashion, with one or the other bursting into tears and running upstairs every ten minutes or so. If you can imagine the first draft of a Nora Ephron screenplay with the emotional beats laid out but the motivations and witty repartee not yet put in, you'll have an idea of what 'Of Good Stock' is like."
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Talkin' Broadway
June 30th, 2015

"An unsteady combination of undercooked and overdramatic...Ross does not address too many fresh issues in painting portraits of the Stockton trio, even within the boundaries she herself sets...Still, even the familiar can impress if it's presented well, which is thankfully the case here."
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Theatre is Easy
June 30th, 2015

"Ross writes about a dysfunctional family—a familiar topic to anyone who has ever seen a play—but she makes it fresh...The dialogue, which involves a lot of hilarious teasing, rings true. Ross writes how people actually talk, with characters speaking over each other. This is indicated in the script and director Lynne Meadow navigates it well, so it's not difficult to understand what is being said."
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Theater Pizzazz
June 30th, 2015

"Ross knows how to craft believable, interesting characters, funny lines, heartbreaking dialogue, dramatic plot points, as well as men who are more than appendages to her women. Yet, despite all of its plusses, the play ultimately feels a tad insubstantial...The bigger issue here, though, is Ross never makes the stakes high enough. Sure, this 'Stock' is tasty, but it really could use a bit more meat in it."
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Stage Buddy
June 30th, 2015

"The ensemble fearlessly portray characters who are not very likable and with whom we might have difficulty empathizing with, but it’s testament to their commitment that they each deliver truly memorable performances...There is a bittersweet quality to 'Of Good Stock' that lingers with you after the show is over. Ross doesn’t seem to have set out to deliver a cautionary tale, and yet the play contains warnings that sometimes come off as reflections of ourselves."
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Exeunt Magazine
June 30th, 2015

"The production has some touching moments about family, love, and marriage, but it skates along on the surface and the emotional payoffs come far too late...The men feel a bit like the audience’s proxy (and their observational roles are made much more substantial by the great cast)...Once the sisters stop fighting with each other and start fighting for each other, the play finds some genuine emotion but it was perhaps too long a road to that moment."
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New York Theater
July 5th, 2015

"Not much happens in 'Of Good Stock,' other than the standard snipes and tear wipes of any family get-together. There are any number of places where the play could have gone, but doesn’t — we learn, for example, that Jess as the executor to her father’s literary estate refuses to allow any of his novels to be turned into movies. Why? We’re not told and nothing much is made of this. But if 'Of Good Stock' doesn’t quite go anywhere, it does take us someplace."
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Broadway Blog
June 30th, 2015

"A finely acted production smartly staged...Act I is a delight, providing the necessary exposition for appreciating the characters; Act II, not so much, because the stakes never rise to a higher level. There are no big gotcha moments, just more character-exposing small talk. I admit to welling up at several moments and to laughing loudly now and then, but in general, once I knew who was who and what they felt about each other, there wasn’t much else to take home from this weekend in the country."
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The Guardian (UK)
June 30th, 2015

"Less a new play than a potpourri of commonly occurring tropes and types...If 'Of Good Stock' lacks originality, there are still things to recommend it – the naturalistic dialogue, the chewy roles for actors. But there’s also much that seems clumsy, particularly in the repetitive structure and the abrupt ending. Lynne Meadow’s overheated direction, which treats each small squabble like a catastrophe, doesn’t help...As it stands, 'Of Good Stock' yields a fairly low rate of return."
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New Jersey Newsroom
July 1st, 2015

"You’ve seen this sort of play before, and Ross’s version presents few surprises. It is competently written, however, and delivers a decent number of laughs, with Alicia Silverstone being especially amusing as the teary Amy. Solid acting lends these family matters a fine sense of spontaneity, which makes for painless viewing. Lynne Meadow, the director, has cultivated the agreeable performances and gives the play a deluxe physical production."
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NorthJersey.com
July 1st, 2015

"A rather formulaic play that marches down the well-worn dramatic path of family dysfunction. It's also, though, appealingly generous, and sometimes quite funny...The play can careen without preparation from serious to farcical...They can't make 'Of Good Stock' a great play, but they do succeed in giving audiences an involving one, which might also stir some thoughts about the maintenance work needed to keep relationships going."
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BlogCritics.org
July 1st, 2015

"Through superb naturalistic dialogue and intensely focused performances that the cast makes look easy, every one of these characters is fully fleshed out... It’s a fully four-dimensional depiction of the lives of people who seem as real as the people you really know. At a moment when lots of theater companies are experimenting with 'immersive' productions, a solid traditional one like this meaty comedy, with all the creative pieces fitting together just right, is the true immersive art."
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Act Three - The Reviews
June 11th, 2015

"The funny, poignant, and slice of life production...The production itself is quite good and for too many probably cuts quite close to the bone...I'm not sure if we are supposed to like any of these people or just see some reflection of ourselves in any one of them but the story unfolded mostly as expected and maybe took about 15 minutes too long."
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As Her World Turns
August 3rd, 2015

"There are a bunch of plot points that keep things moving forward but I most enjoyed the quieter moments as characters prepared food or washed dishes, alternately building bonds and then breaking them with each meal. It’s a roller coaster ride and the sisters are perhaps more shrill than one would like, but each one is fleshed out beautifully and a final breakthrough late in the show is especially poignant. This show closed last weekend but I hope the play finds its way to a theater near you."
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Financial Times (UK)
July 1st, 2015

"But if Ross initially seems to have mastered the three-sister set-up, the second act founders on a trinity of theme, not character. Each sister comes to represent something primal: birth, marriage, death. Ross’s handling of these issues devolves into melodrama. Even at its most cliché-ridden, however, 'Of Good Stock' holds the attention."
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LA Splash
July 3rd, 2015

"One might say that 'Of Good Stock' was just another family-gets-together, family-fights, family-makes up, type of play and you are right. But, mix that formula with 6 incredibly talented, non-stop performances and set it on a stage so beautifully designed that you just might want to move in, and you have a play that feeds to your emotions, your laughter and the desire to just join in with coffee and bacon on the beach in Cape Cod."
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Los Angeles Times
April 7th, 2015
For a previous production

"The play itself often feels prepackaged and overwrought... The rising director has met the challenge of Ross’ stylized dialogue with a heightened performance style that borders, at moments, on shtick. It’s very loud...Ross’ characters are drawn with assurance, wit and gentle mockery — we definitely have met these people — but can seem a little glib. The boyfriends, essentially plot mechanisms, don’t require many dimensions."
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O
April 6th, 2015
For a previous production

"A rollicking and bittersweet new play...Director Gaye Taylor Upchurch finds ways to navigate through the story’s occasional dead spots; though the show’s running time is only slightly more than two hours, the script seems slightly padded. With sisterly catfights, a little bit goes a long way and too much can be excruciating to watch. It starts to feel too much like real life."
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LA Splash
April 7th, 2015
For a previous production

"The results are nothing but phenomenal. Thanks to the brilliant cast and Gaye Taylor Upchurch’s visionary direction, playwright Melissa Ross’s dramatic voice is one of the strongest at SCR...As far as 'Stock' is concerned, her sisters leap off the page in their own unique ways, especially showing a lot of humor and poignancy."
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H
April 8th, 2015
For a previous production

"'The title slyly understates its value — Melissa Ross' crackling dramatic comedy about sibling rivalry (and revelry)...'Of Good Stock' is fully ready for prime time and should enjoy a successful run on Broadway as well as a hit movie version along the lines of "August: Osage County." It's yet another jewel in South Coast Repertory's crown."
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S
April 7th, 2015
For a previous production

"The three-sister paradigm has existed in drama since Shakespeare’s King Lear...Swiftly directed by Gaye Taylor Upchurch, Melissa Ross’s Of Good Stock follows a rough outline laid out by her predecessors. But the sister-women in this world premiere staging takes the idea into current times. The play is infused with topical tumult suited to our era of the 21st century...The issues brought forth by this three-sister tale are simultaneously unique and universal."
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W
April 9th, 2015
For a previous production

"Each of the characters is sharply defined and we get to know them intimately during the three day period of the story...The dialogue is contemporary, witty and laced with humor and performances are impressive. There is a slight problem, which is that too often some of that meaty dialogue gets buried amidst the high pitched voices of the squabbling women, all yelling in unison...If you could be a fly on the wall, this would be the family on which you'd never tire of eavesdropping."
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