DANIEL TALBOTT AT RATTLESTICK THEATER
When one walks in the Rattlestick theater one almost shiver with a chill going through
one's bones because of a very effective snowy setting and one is transported to Sierra Nevada
and its huge snowy park, though the setting here is not huge but its most effective done by
Raul Abrego, the set designer.
We sit and anticipate the chilling drama which doesn't unfortunately Unfolds instead of
a big difficult effort of the actors who are quite good but somehow can't grasp the script because the script is very static and if it does move, it moves slowly.
Its a story of a down on its luck family living in a trailer. two brothers and one sister who is holding a dead infant in her lap and the elder brother, (Seth Numrich) digging a fresh grave
(Another wonderful touch in the set designing department) He digs the grave almost throughout the play and Seth Numrich is totally absorbed in his character and is brilliant.
The sister, (Libby Woodbridge) hold the dead infant in her lap and is quiet mellow depicting
the sad tragedy. Often I couldn't hear her. The script has a conflict of the sorts, it has mellow and tender poetry in it and violence but the violence's tension and the climax it would have created is missing, so we wait while the sister announces that the grave is not deep enough and the brother digs some more.
There is the second brother,(Noah Galvin) who stays silent for the most part and sits still but often shivering. He actually is very effective. Some how we feel his pain more severely than the rest of the siblings.
Than a very young looking mother of these children show up with a big gun in her hand and the writer completely gives away the surprise. The mother played by, (Kathryn Erbe) is far too young looking to play the mother and is too soft in her delivery, some times not audible.
In the beginning I thought she was one of the other siblings.
They are all broken people, all damaged souls blaming each other.
The elder son, Seth Numrich has a wonderful scene with the mother when he accuses her of being,"Guilty" He has incredible energy and can hold the stage with his enormous, slender , youthful but powerful presence.
The mother lacks that kind of intensity, kisses her children good bye and is off............
I don't want to spoil the surprise but the ending is not much of a surprise after seeing the big gun.
The script has problems where the characters are not developed, its a good scenario lacking the tension of a great tragedy.
Also it takes so long for the grave digging that one wonders about the security guard showing up..................
and questioning them, after all its a public park and they have a dead baby in their hands.
Wouldn't they rush the action, bury the baby and get done with it. At the end of the play the baby is still not buried.
I enjoyed some of the poetry in the writing and enjoyed the performance by Seth and loved the set but it becomes a kind of nice setting for a lame drama.
Tel: 212-260-6207: cell