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Blessed Unrest 

Wednesday, Nov 5 2008
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Central Works' latest collaborative deals with the history and emotions of the environmental movement, as brought to the limelight by Paul Hawken's best-selling book of the same title. The seamlessness of the production – including sound design by Gregory Scharpen and video design by Terry Lamb – underscores the call for all of us to join the mysterious woman who shows up at an international capitalist's home and make the world a better place. However, this call to action is undermined by the framework of the story, which seems stodgily stuck in an old paradigm. The Scroogelike moments when this white businessman is shown the error of his ways are beautifully staged, yet let the audience off the hook. They allow us to already feel more enlightened than this man – who among us in the Bay Area comes with a fondness for unrepentant capitalists? – and fail to challenge us to look at ourselves and what we could and should do. For all the simple pleasures of the production, it falls short of inspiring a desire to actually do something different with our lives.

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Molly Rhodes

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