Sunday, April 25, 2010

A Behanding in Spokane

Christopher Walken is hilarious. He started his career out knee deep in dramatic rolls, but now seems to have made a complete cross over to strictly comedic performances. At first his choices seemed to rely heavily on his unique voice tone and his delivery of lines, but seeing him live on Broadway has convinced me that his weird inflection choices are all conscious decisions. Whether he has just decided to embrace the laughs he receives from how he sounds, or if he has consciously known all these years how funny he can make the most mundane lines sound does not even matter. He is eff-in deliriously funny.

A Behanding in Spokane is a dark dark comedy of the absurd. A man who lost his hand in a horrible accident 47 years ago has been looking for his stolen appendage his whole life. A young couple has an aboriginal hand that they are dying to pawn off. And a hotel receptionist has unresolved issues with his job title and a gibbon from his past. Absolutely absurd.

Joining Walken onstage for this merry-go-round of absurdity is Sam Rockwell, Anthony Mackie and Zoe Kazan. Rockwell and Walken both seem to relish in how outlandish the plot is and bounce off each other, seemingly riffing back and forth, trying to steer the audience around the next unseen curve.

No part has ever fit Walken so well besides, maybe, his character in Pulp Fiction.

This play is rife with foul language, racial slurs, homophobia, grotesque props (amputated hands), and more Walken-isms than you can count. If none of this is too offensive for you, you will have a laugh-a-second good time.

Heed the Dub

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