Already closed | 1h 40m | West Village

The Body of an American

From 69 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Relevant

About the show

Primary Stages and Rhoda R. Herrick present the New York premiere of an award-winning play, exploring the ethical and personal consequences of Paul Watson’s famous photograph. More…

Dan O'Brien tells the true story of an extraordinary friendship as two men, a war photojournalist and playwright, journey from some of the most dangerous places on earth to the depths of the human soul. It is an award-winning glimpse at a moment in recent history when a single, stark photograph - of the body of an American dragged from the wreck of a Blackhawk through the streets of Mogadishu - reshaped the course of global events.

Member Reviews (69)


Great acting, Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Relevant

During previews
Slow, Informational, Long winded, Boring, Historical

See it if You like watching the discovery/history channels. Very informational. There will be those who really like this, Im just not one of them

Don't see it if Writing style is dated & you never feel connected to characters. Long winded & Hard to stay interested. Would make a better book/documentary

During previews
Confusing, Boring, Excruciating, Slow

See it if you need to catch up on your sleep since this play is B*O*R*I*N*G.

Don't see it if you don't like boring, slow-moving, and confusing plays.

During previews
Disjointed, Confusing, Good concept, Thought-provoking, Feels long

See it if You are familiar with the subject matter and think you might find it interesting to see it onstage; If you don't have anything else to see

Don't see it if You want a play that is easy to follow, easy to latch onto. The subject matter was interesting, but the execution was very unfocused.

During previews

See it if You like like shows that are so slow and boring. Actors were good story slow felt my mind wander and throughout most of it

Don't see it if I would just say don't see it

February 23rd, 2016
"A lyrical, untidy and ultimately poignant work of theater…At times the play can seem glum, solipsistic and self-serious, but what invigorates it — beyond the energy and precision of the performances — is the sense of both men struggling, and often failing, to understand what draws them to each o...
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February 23rd, 2016
"A curious, not always successful, but consistently intriguing character study...Director Jo Bonney keeps the pace brisk, the trajectory clear...For O’Brien to draw parallels between Watson’s heroics and his own cushy life as an academically connected playwright comes across as not only presumptu...
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February 23rd, 2016
"The play takes on the frustrating undertones of a therapy session. On top of this, O'Brien's text often veers into theatrical cliché…The actors furiously circle, cross, and shift character in Jo Bonney's deceptively lackadaisical staging…A few false epiphanies wrapped in self-pity and uninspired...
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February 23rd, 2016
"The play is anything but a conventional biography; instead, it's an account of O'Brien's ultimately unsuccessful struggle to figure out what makes Watson tick...Despite these gripping revelations, the rest of 'The Body of an American' disappoints...'The Body of an American' is yet another new pl...
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