Photo by Don Kellogg

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

All New People

 Zack Braff's new play, All New People, feels more like an episode of Scrubs than an evening in the theatre.   Don't get me wrong - it was pretty good - certainly well acted - but the comedy reminded me something for a TV set rather than a stage.  

The substance of the play is a nicely packaged story about an air traffic controller interrupted in the act of killing himself in a beach house during the sparsely populated winter season on Long Beach Island, New Jersey.

Braff certainly has an ear for comedy, but I'm thinking it's misplaced on the stage.  With the introduction (or perhaps i should say abrupt interruptions) of movie-quality back story video projected on a large white wall, Braff and director, Peter DuBois, confuse you.  The scenes were not just video clips.  They were actual scenes in the play - indispensable to the story.  Seemed to me like the entire play could have been packaged up for a movie.  And for the record, I wouldn't be surprised it it's not already been optioned.

If this sounds cool to you, I recommend you see it.  It's entertaining.  And for actors, he's got a decent lineup.   The adorable Justin Bartha (Charlie), the off-beat David Wilson Barnes (Myron), the hysterically quirky Anna Camp (Kim) and brilliantly dizzy Krysten Ritter (Emma) are entertaining, wacky, and lovable all rolled up in one.

Sitcom or drama - you decide, but just know you're paying a tad bit more than you would for a movie.  You'll have to decide for yourself if the price differential is worth it.