PLAYBILL.COM'S THEATRE WEEK IN REVIEW, Dec. 7-13: American Psycho and Heathers Slash Their Ways to the Stage and NBC Will Hear the Sound of More Musicals

By Robert Simonson
13 Dec 2013

Matt Smith
Photo by Manuel Harlan
"It sounds improbable: a musical thriller about a serial killer," began the review in The Guardian, voicing the thought on everyone's mind. "But Sondheim did it in Sweeney Todd. And, although this version of Bret Easton Ellis' notorious 1991 bestseller, is a very different bucket of blood, it works superbly thanks to Rupert Goold's stylish production, Duncan Sheik's music and lyrics and Matt Smith's beautifully defined performance as the deluded hero."

The Independent called the show "diabolically slick," adding "this witty, almost terminally knowing show tackles [its improbable subject] with deadpan cheek."

The Mirror was less enthused. "Turning the bloody tale into this highly stylish musical makes it much funnier but no less dark," it wrote. "This is also an entertaining tribute to the 80s which any child of the decade will love. Still, this show will only hold great appeal for fans of the book and movie version."

Variety, meanwhile, cared for it even less, saying that, "beneath the highly polished surface there’s little drama or, crucially, danger. In a serial-killer thriller, that’s not just a problem, it’s an indictment."


Speaking of musicals about psychopaths, Heathers — the new Laurence O'Keefe-Kevin Murphy musical based on the dark 1988 film comedy about a clique of domineering high school girls and the outsider girl and boy who decided to rub them out one by one — will arrive Off-Broadway in 2014. It was seen earlier this fall in Los Angeles, CA.

Andy Fickman directed the sold-out stage premiere that played the Hudson Backstage Theatre. He will repeat his work for New York audiences. Choreography will be by Marguerite Derricks.

Heathers will begin March 17, 2014, towards a March 31 opening night at New World Stages.

Hey, hungry theatre composers, "Taxi Driver" is still out there. Get on it!