But Lobby Hero is no gimmick event, its no-weak-link casting anything but a stunt — strong enough, in fact, to merit serious Tony consideration. Related Story Shubert Foundation Appoints Board Member Diana Phillips As President At once intimate and encompassing, Lobby Hero, directed by Trip Cullman, takes no prisoners in its parsing of loyalty and betrayal, ambition and ethics, with detours into sexual harassment, police brutality and the awkward, nervous stirrings of what might be the grace of a new love. Scared yet? Joan Marcus Set entirely in or just outside the entryway of a Manhattan apartment building, the play follows a quartet of New Yorkers whose lives criss-cross in that most transitional of places — a lobby.
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Keep talking. And none of them can participate in the simplest exchanges of words without doing serious damage. Sure, the talk at first seems merely casual as these four characters pair off to shoot the breeze in and around an apartment building lobby where it always feels like 3 a. Henry ; and the Mutt-and-Jeff police partners who drop by. They are the swaggering Bill Mr. Evans, in a terrific Broadway debut and his rookie partner, Dawn Ms.
For one thing, much of what they have to say is both achingly funny and so pathetic it verges on tragic. For another, the combined wit and non-wisdom of these fallible i. References to sexual harassment, abuses of power in the workplace and racial profiling scarcely seemed to raise an eyebrow when I first saw the show in ; they evoke audible, anxious murmurs in the audience of He understands that purity of thought and deed is pretty much impossible in this muddy world.
His dialogue is fueled by vacillation, equivocation and contradiction, with sentences that seem to eat their own words. Few actors are as qualified to deliver such precisely indefinite speech as Mr. So now he works the night shift in a residential lobby that reeks of urban loneliness. David Rockwell is the set designer. Henry, has a strict list of rules and regulations. So, at first glance, does Mr.
And, yes, this is the same Mr. Evans who played the superhero Captain America onscreen. Bill is just the person for someone like the eager, dewy Dawn, fresh out of the Police Academy, to have as a protective mentor, right?
And there you have the tidy setup for a play that operates on a system of moving parallels. William, who is African-American, knows how easy it would be for his brother to get lost in the legal system. Disenchantment will set in fully when she learns why her partner is paying such regular visits to the building where Jeff works. It still does occasionally, especially during a protracted stretch of secret sharing in the second act.
Evans is a marvel of smooth calculation and bluster. His Bill is the most blatantly manipulative of the characters, which means the most likely to succeed. Lonergan in making confident art out of such constantly shifting uncertainty.
Keep talking. And none of them can participate in the simplest exchanges of words without doing serious damage. Sure, the talk at first seems merely casual as these four characters pair off to shoot the breeze in and around an apartment building lobby where it always feels like 3 a. Henry ; and the Mutt-and-Jeff police partners who drop by. They are the swaggering Bill Mr. Evans, in a terrific Broadway debut and his rookie partner, Dawn Ms. For one thing, much of what they have to say is both achingly funny and so pathetic it verges on tragic.
‘Lobby Hero’ Review: Chris Evans, Michael Cera Take No Prisoners In Lonergan Drama
The aching compassion for humanity in that Oscar winner is second nature to Kenneth Lonergan, going back at least to , when Playwrights Horizons commissioned this bittersweet, people-friendly play. Set in the lobby of a generic Manhattan apartment building, the play looks both kindly and critically upon the kind of characters Lonergan loves to write: working-class stiffs, generally decent people who are unexpectedly challenged by issues of ethics. Jeff Michael Cera , a perfect Mr. Sensitive is the night security guard — and absolutely not, as we are frequently reminded, the doorman. That would be William Brian Tyree Henry, made for this role , the senior security guard, who likes Jeff, but despairs of his ever manning up and keeps giving him self-help books to motivate him and improve his mind.
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