Sunday, December 10, 2006
'High Fidelity' on Broadway with high-low results
We liked the Nick Hornby book and the Jack Black/John Cusack movie very much so the idea of a Broadway version seemed appealing -- especially since my graduate school doled out 150 free tickets (close to the stage.) The sets were amazing (a nicely apppointed Brooklyn walk-up apartment transforms before your eyes into a scungy record store, complete with The Clash, Sex Pistols and Springsteen posters, a beat-up cash register, and, above the glass front window, a fake NY skyline rising up. The actors were all good -- the lead was terrific, and one of his sad-sack pals (the skinny one who is not trying to reprise the Jack Black role, and who could transform himself into Snoop Dogg) was hilarious --- but the song lyrics were often excruciating to the point of distraction. You have only just recovered from one groan-worthy line when, boom, another plops in your lap. One character emotes that the record store "smells like ass.'' The female lead, complaining about her brand-new, tantric-hippie boyfriend, sings that "when he's mounting me, I feel a mounting sense of insecurity!'' Ugh. That's what you call Au Bon Painful. While it was an enjoyable evening, I can't help but worry that someone's going to lose a bundle on this one.