|Kellen Garner, Kelly Fulcher, Tyler Boettcher, Clayton Marlowe, and Mickey Bryce|
photo by Sarah Rodgers
Click here for more information on this production that runs through March 11th.
".Aaron Sorkin's searing 1989 military drama A Few Good Men is receiving a solid production at Zao Theatre. The combination of Zao's strong cast and firm direction shows why this play is still compelling and not just a standard run of the mill courtroom drama...loosely based...on a mid-1980s case of military hazing that turned into murder among U.S. Marines based in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The play pits the slick, slightly smart-ass lawyer Lt. Kaffee against the domineering Col. Nathan Jessep, the Guantanamo Bay base commander, as the court-martial trial of the two U.S. Marines charged with the murder of a troubled young solider unfolds with twists, turns, and plenty of intrigue.
The play is filled with a host of realistic characters and crackerjack dialogue that pops under Diane Senffner's clear and concise direction. As Kaffee and Jessep, Kellen Garner and Mickey Bryce deliver nuanced performances full of fire and passion. ..Garner commands the stage as this flippant, charming and slightly self-centered man. Bryce is steadfast and steely as Jessep...finds a way to interject a biting sense of humor into the part which makes Jessep completely three dimensional as well as scary as hell, since you never know what he is truly thinking or will do next....Kelly Fulcher is exceptional as Lieutenant Commander Joanne Galloway....She brings a lot of compassion to this young woman who is a fighter—not only for the rights of those on trial but also in the many altercations she has with Kaffee, Jessep, and the constant stream of military men she is forced to deal with. Tyler Galley and Ryan Marcham deliver refined performances full of empathy of the two confused soldiers on tria...Senffner's direction provides a clear delineation between the legal and military sides of the case...Her staging is clean and always concise, and she derives strong performances from every actor in the cast no matter how large the part. ...My one small quibble has to do with the use of music tracks from the film score soundtrack during scene changes and a few times as musical underscoring. While the tracks serve the play well, the same bits are repeated over and over again, a slight detriment in this otherwise very good production. Sorkin's A Few Good Men is a swiftly paced play with intelligent dialogue, intrigue, and interesting characters that builds to an explosive courtroom climax. With a very good cast, skilled direction, and good creative elements, Zao's is an expert production of this very well-crafted play. " -Gil Benbrook, Talkin' Broadway (click here to read the complete review)