28 October 2006

Theater Review: Eugene O'Neill - A Moon for the Misbegotten

Seen on 28 October 2006 at the Old Vic theater in London Drama by Eugene O'Neill. Set in rural Connecticut in 1923.

Quoted from the Old Vic Website: Josie (Best), a towering woman with a quick tongue and a ruined reputation lives in a dilapidated Connecticut farmhouse with her conniving father, Phil Hogan (Meaney). Together they're a formidable force as they scrape together a livelihood. But Josie's softer side is exposed through her love of Jim Tyrone (Spacey), Hogan's landlord and drinking buddy - a third-rate actor whose dreams of stardom were washed away by alcohol.

Cast Eve Best Billy Carter Colm Meaney Eugene O'Hare Kevin Spacey

Director Howard Davies

Absolutely brilliant acting, intense, engaging. A flawless production.

But why does anyone want to put this on stage? The central conflict - self-loathing caused by alcoholism, cheap sex and oedipal family affairs followed by redemption through re-birth - seems incredibly dated. I found myself looking at it as if it was a historical exhibit: That's how Irish immigrants lived in the US in the nineteen-twenties.

The only excuse: You have an ensemble of world class actors that you want to show off - evidently the case here.

You can find more information at the Olc Vic theater web-site

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