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items tagged with Neil LaBute

The Player Is the Thing: A Dozen Memorable Performances
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2009-12-21 12:00:00

Narrowing down 2009's sensational stage portrayals into a list of 12 "favorites" is a hopeless task, really, so don't take this as any kind of last word on the subject; you'll find mention of amazing stage work all throughout my year-end coverage. Still, here's hoping you were able to catch at least a few of the following performances, which helped underline just how crazy with theatrical talent our area actually is.


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Fall’s Swell, and Ends Well: Fall Theatre in the Quad Cities and Surrounding Areas
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2009-08-31 12:00:00

Kathi Osborne, Carrie Saloutos, and Jessica Swersey in Circa '21's Mid-Life! The Crisis MusicalAt last count, there were a whopping 46 area-theatre productions scheduled between September and December, and included among the titles are A Dog's Life, The Big Funk, Scrooge!, Don't Hug Me, and Mid-Life! The Crisis Musical. It's the season that my editor, Jeff, has been waiting for!


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The Talking Heads: "Bash," at the Village Theatre through August 8
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2009-08-03 12:50:09

Jessica Sheridan in BashNeil LaBute's Bash - the debut presentation from the newly formed Phoenix Theatre Company - finds three of the author's short plays performed in succession, and in the middle of its first offering, actor Chris White rises from his chair, walks to its back, removes his suit coat, and then sits down again. In movie parlance, this is what would be known as Bash's "action scene."


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Feeling Spirited: "Ghost Town," "Lakeview Terrace," and "My Best Friend's Girl"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2008-09-24 08:20:15

Ricky Gervais, Tea Leoni, and Greg Kinnear in Ghost TownGHOST TOWN

Maybe you need to have seen a lot of bad romantic comedies, or bad movies involving ghosts, or bad romantic comedies involving ghosts, to appreciate just how good Ghost Town is. Maybe not, of course, especially considering how hysterical Ricky Gervais is in the movie's lead. But if you sit through enough dreary Hollywood outings of this sort, it doesn't take long to realize that something pretty special is happening here.


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Shooting Stars: “Hollywoodland,” “A Scanner Darkly,” “Invincible,” “The Illusionist,” "Crank," and "The Wicker Man"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2006-09-13 04:49:56

Ben Affleck and Diane Lane in HollywoodlandHOLLYWOODLAND

Against all expectation, the most touching performance in current releases is probably Ben Affleck's turn as George Reeves in the Tinseltown drama Hollywoodland. Director Allen Coulter's work centers around the mysterious shooting death of the famed Superman star of '50s television, and Affleck is just about perfect here. Seen in flashbacks, he plays Reeves' heartrending rise and fall with the abashed sweetness of a man who knows his good looks and moderate talent will only carry him so far, and Affleck's strong, subtle turn is effortlessly moving. And as trophy wife Tony Mannix, Diane Lane nearly matches him, suggesting entire generations of women carelessly tossed away by Hollywood's obsession with youth and beauty; Hollywoodland's tragedy is hers as much as Reeves', and the emotionally naked Lane turns in a fierce, brave portrayal.


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