Who Needs Theatre: Dramatic Opinions

Robert Sanford Brustein, Author Atlantic Monthly Press $0 (320p) ISBN 978-0-87113-206-2
Brustein's theater reviews and occasional essays make a marvelous armchair companion for theatergoers. His judgments are well informed, trenchant, sometimes perverse but always worth listening to. The New Republic drama critic knocks La Cage aux Folles for being too conventional; he analyzes 42nd Street in the context of the craze for revivals; he finds Neil Simon's Biloxi Blues meretricious; and he is disappointed in Sam Shepard's A Lie of the Mind. His generous praise for such plays as 'Night Mother and Glengary Glen Ross extends our awareness of how drama connects to our public and private lives. Brustein is not afraid to look at Sir Laurence Olivier's dismal string of film and TV roles, or to probe Clifford Odet's self-promotion as that of a prodigy who made a Faustian pact with the movie industry. The essays reflect his belief that the proper function of theater is to alter consciousness. (September 23)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1987
Release date: 01/01/1987
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