Christopher Plummer is making his return to Broadway in Barrymore, a drama about the legendary actor John Barrymore. The show is currently in preview, following engagements in Canada and the U.S. Broadway critics weighed in with their opinions March 25. Here's your chance to add your voice to theirs. Describe the show, its themes and its conflicts. How well does this production explore them? More importatnly, how well does Plummer embody Barrymore? Does the show work even if you're not familiar with Barrymore? How does the performance fit in with the rest of Plummer's career?
If you've seen the production, please post your comments -- long or short -- in the Barrymore subject under the Playbill Critics Circle topic on the Playbill On-Line Message Board. Playbill thanks, in advance, those who take the time to write.
The following are reviews received prior to the launch of our Message Boards. Please post all future reviews to the Message Boards:
From Karen Waters, Nutley, NJ:
Attention all theater goers, if you have not yet had the opportunity to see Barrymore, then I strongly urge you to do so. I have been fortunate enough to see this play on three occasions, and in my very biased opinion, I loved it!
Barrymore is set in the Spring of 1942. This finds our "Hollywood Bad Boy", Jack Barrymore, at the end of his career attempting to make his comeback by reprising one of his most famous roles as Richard the III. He has rented a theater to rehearse his lines, and in the process takes all in attendance at the Music Box Theater on a wonderful journey through his life and times.
Mr. Luce has written an excellent play with much humor. Though this play is considered a drama, I found it to be extremely funny. I caught myself laughing out loud throughout the 1 hour and 30 minute production. It is the blend of the comedy, along with the drama, that truly make this play work.
The man who brings Jack Barrymore back to life is the gifted and talented actor Christopher Plummer. Mr. Plummer has won just about every award this year for his role as Barrymore:
- 1997 Tony Award Winner, Best Actor in a Play
- 1997 Desk Drama Award, Best Actor in a Play
- 1997 Out Critics Circle Award, Best Actor in a Play
- 1997 FANY Award, Best Actor in a Play
His performance is nothing less than sheer brilliance! (6/10/97)
I was fortunate to attend Barrymore the opening night of Previews. Christopher Plummer gave the audience a night to remember. Mr. Plummer was John Barrymore for approximately an hour and a half of humor and sadness and of complete retrospection within the life of Barrymore. It was theatre heaven to watch Mr. Plummer and to be drawn in to this character.
I would also be remiss not to add that the role of Frank the stage manager was a great touchstone for Barrymore and grounded the play a bit.
Mr. Plummer carries this show with command and sheer brilliance. However, the play in and of itself has limitations and that is it is without closure a sense of finality or direction for the character.
As an aside it was fun to attend the first night of Previews as Julie Harris, Charles Durning, Gena Rowlands were all in attendance. I had the opportunity to meet Christopher Plummer who is a true gentleman and a gracious human being. (3/24/97)