arts 09.7.16

Fall Preview
Part 1

The family drama Manchester by the Sea, opening November 18, isn't any old family drama: it was written by the formidably talented Kenneth Lonergan, who also directed (writers ruling in Hollywood?!). In addition to the reliably pitch-perfect work by Mr. Lonergan, there are strong performances by Casey Affleck and Michelle Williams, plus the requisite Massachusetts vibe (hundred of r's go missing!). That makes this the prestige pic of the fall. Watch the trailer here.

Walter Robinson has long been known as an art critic and chronicler but he's also a painter whose reputation has only been burnished with time. His influences include pop culture, pulp fiction covers and advertising. Which means you'll find cats and bowls of salad and lingerie models and Entenmann's Popettes and spin paintings (Robinson did them before the other guy). Opening September 17 at the relocated Deitch, 18 Wooster 212.343.7300, a retrospective of work by Mr. Robinson.

Not unlike Shakespeare, Chekhov's four major plays can be a tough sit when done badly and transcendent when done well. Of the latter, we can still recall the mournful electricity elicited by Irene Worth in Andrei Serban's Cherry Orchard production, many years ago now. Late in the play, Ms. Worth circled the stage in a gait both frantic and dignified, saying a final farewell to the beloved homestead while the audience nearly levitated with empathy. So, if one were to entrust an adaptation to a current playwright, Stephen Karam (Sons of the Prophet, The Humans) would be the ideal pick given not only the intelligence and grace of his writing but his capacious grasp of, and compassion for, the human comedy. And that's what's on offer when the Roundabout production begins previews on September 15. A Karam adaption starring Diane Lane, directed by Simon Godwin.

The smart, funny comedy of manners High Maintenance, which follows a weed dealer on his stops around New York, goes from hit web series to HBO, premiering on Friday, September 16, 11pm (though a 4:20 start-time should have been the play).

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