Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Yates Prates

There's a new London production of David Mamet's Pulitzer Prize-winning Glengarry Glen Ross, starring Christian Slater.

It's a very entertaining play, and doesn't need to be propped up by claims of relevance. Sure, it's relevant, as is any work that demonstrates in a gripping manner how people act, but as with any revival, those behind it feel the need to bang the drum and say it's amazingly prescient and more meaningful than ever.

Usually, the facile claim about this particular piece is it reveals the dark underpinnings of capitalism.  But with Hollywood scandals in the news, director Sam Yates is trying a somewhat new tack:

What's interesting about the play is Mamet's dealing with a kind of toxic masculinity.  It's men all thrown together and you see dreadful behavior--you see the dreadful behavior of men who have power over others.

I think this misses the point.  These are desperate men who have precious little power.  Even those who seem to have some power are afraid of losing it.

It may be a fine production.  But Yates' comments don't give one confidence.


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