Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Particular Men |
Broadway Theatre Archive
Actors: Robert Baines, Verna Bloom, W.B. Brydon, Alice Drummond, Joel Fabiani
Director: Glenn Jordan
Genres: Drama, Television, Musicals & Performing Arts
Written by Emmy AwardŽ-winning playwright Loring Mandel, Particular Men recalls what might be considered the most significant event of man?s entire history?the introduction of nuclear weaponry. Although fictitious, Mandel?... more »
Point is vague...
Mark Savary | Seattle, WA | 10/16/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"An experimental effort at getting into the minds of Oppenheimer and other Manhattan Project participants, "Particular Men" fails almost from the start. First, and most obvious to the viewer, the choppy time-shifting back and forth from event to event wears thin very quickly. This can be a clever effect, but not when it is done in so monotonous a fashion. Second, all of the principal historical figures have been poorly disguised behind made-up names (even Einstein!), further removing us from caring one way or the other. Additionally, there is a bizarre sterility in the play that negates emotion, and before long, the play just becomes tedious. Are we watching a play about how the characters felt about the Bomb, or about the Red Scare? Neither seems too clear by the end, and the point of the play is... what? The Bomb was bad? Using it was bad? The Red Scare was bad? Oppenheimer was bad? All of these? None of these? Unfortunately, the whole point of the play is rather vague. Through the disjointed narrative structure, the emotional impact is hampered, and the denouement (such as it is), is far too talky and experimental to support itself.The tragedy is that the cast is excellent. The sets and make-up are extraordinary for the time (1972). The performances are mostly first-class, and even the dialogue sparkles. All of this is wasted through the unfortunate choice to jump around the story's different time periods. The disjointed structure does nothing for the characters or their story, which are both pretty good. Halfway through, you'll start wondering how much longer the play is, and when it will end.The transfer is fair, but the video elements are clearly dated (the cover image is very blurry, but that is not necessarily indicative of the DVD quality). Keach keeps the play moving, so Stacy Keach fans should check this out. But those interested in the history surrounding the Manhattan Project, the dawn of the Atomic Age, and the Red Scare will be disappointed that the play was done here as "art" instead of in a more straight-forward fashion."