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Film, "August: Osage County": A Dysfunctional Family Deals with Public Conflict and Drugs in Private Parts

"August: Osage County": A Dysfunctional Family Deals with Public Conflict and Drugs in Private Parts

Testing an idea that every unhappy family is histrionic in its own way, John Wells directs Tracy Letts' adaptation of his own prize-studded 2007 play. Here's what happens when a venomous, painkiller-addled matriarch (Meryl Streep) and her three willful adult…
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Culture, Stage American Dreams: Two Plays Address Our Hopes and Fears

American Dreams: Two Plays Address Our Hopes and Fears

Early in the second act of Superior Donuts, produced by Custom Made Theatre Company, Arthur (Don Wood) explains how his immigrant heritage shaped his consciousness: "The root of the Polish character," he says, "is hopelessness." In Wood's compelling portrayal, Arthur,…
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Culture, The Exhibitionist Video of the Day: <i>Superior Donuts</i>

Video of the Day: Superior Donuts

If you looked just at the dramatis personae in Tracy Letts' Superior Donuts, which premieres tonight at Custom Made Theatre Company, you might think it easy to peg. Arthur (Don Wood) is a draft-dodging hippie who hasn't altered his Uptown,…
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Calendar, Night&Day The Hole Shebang

The Hole Shebang

If you looked just at the dramatis personae in Tracy Letts’ Superior Donuts, which premieres tonight at Custom Made Theatre Company, you might think it easy to peg. Arthur (Don Wood) is a draft-dodging hippie who hasn’t altered his Uptown,…
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Film, "Killer Joe": Matthew McConaughey Is a Lurid Pleasure

"Killer Joe": Matthew McConaughey Is a Lurid Pleasure

At one point in Killer Joe, a hideously funny tabloid noir set on the outskirts of Dallas County, Chris Smith (Emile Hirsch) is let into the family double-wide by a relation whose face has just been pummeled into a Rorschach…
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Culture, Stage SF Playhouse's <i>Bug</i> gets under your skin

SF Playhouse's Bug gets under your skin

At the top of the second half of Tracy Letts' 1996 play, Bug, Peter, a troubled young man who claims to have escaped from an Army hospital, squats over a microscope, scrutinizing a sample of his blood. The squalid Oklahoma…
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Culture, Stagecap

Killer Joe

Marin Theatre Company's sold-out production of playwright Tracy Letts' Killer Joe has moved to the Magic Theatre, and reactions couldn't be stronger. It's essentially a hillbilly noir set in a Texas trailer park, in which members of the white trash…
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