GOD OF CARNAGE
Wednesday June 10. 2pm
Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre 242 West 45th Street
James Gandolfini makes his first performance since The Sopranos in God of Carnage.
A hiliarious play set around talks between two sets of parents this Tony award winning play of the year provides laughs for all the family.
After their son is injured during a playground brawl wholesaler Michael (James Gandolfini) and writer Veronica (Marcia Gay Harden) invite fellow parents – lawyer Alan (Jeff Daniels) and wealth manager Annette (Hope Davis) over for afternoon tea while they discuss what led to their son loosing two teeth.
What starts out as a friendly conversation soon turns to turmoil as the parents each take sides and insist that “their son wasn’t to blame”. Added to the tension is the fact that businessman Alan is constantly on the phone doing business and it seems like the whole ordeal has caused him a great inconvenience having to be at the meeting.
As the tensions rise the parents fight and the audience is embroiled in the drama as flowers and thrown and books are destroyed. What adds to the comedy is that these are four experienced actors known to the audience for the performances in shows such as The Sopranos and Angel’s in America. The audience gets to see these actors outside of their usual surroundings and acting terribly out of control!
The set is basic and simly consists of a living room with a couch, a table and a book shelf all placed against a blood red background. It is the simplicity however that adds to the comedy. There are no special effects or props to take away from the real point of the show that is the conversation between the two sides.
An original work by Yasmina Reza this play provides 90 minutes of fun and laughter and a free pass for these four actors to behave badly. Throughout the play the parents take hits at eachother while all three Annette, Michael and Veronica are constantly complaining about Alan’s phone ringing this becomes as laughing point for the audience who each time the phone rings know that trouble is only seconds away.
Phone conversations between Michael and his concerned mother (greatly resembling phone conversations between Tony Sopranos and his mother in The Sopranos) also break up the tension. While his mother is simply calling for an update on their beaten son the conversations appear to be an irritant to Michael while again providing humour for the audience.
After a while the rum replaces the coffee and the cast begin to strip off outer garments and it is then the audience knows that this conversation may take some time.
This work of carnage is still running on Broadway at the Bernard Jacobs Theatre until November 09. Tickets start at just $66.50
AFTER THE SHOW
After the show Jeff Daniels and Hope Davis signed playbills and posed for photographs. Unfortunately not all the cast wait around after matinee performances and James Gandolfini and Marcia Gay Harden were not present on this occasion.