Casa Valentina Reviews

broadwaydevil
Broadway Legend
joined:2/16/11
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 08:07pm
Sorry Limelight, I didn't see your thread and reviews are coming out so I figured I'd start this.

Post them here!
Scratch and claw for every day you're worth! Make them drag you screaming from life, keep dreaming You'll live forever here on earth.
broadwaydevil
Broadway Legend
joined:2/16/11
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 08:11pm
TIme Out New York is mixed to positive.

"Joe Mantello commands the finest corps of character actors onstage now, in an impeccably designed production that shifts subtly from bubbly comedy (Fierstein’s one-liners are sharp as ever) to eruptions of pain and shame. (Rita Ryack’s costumes are perfectly calibrated to the social position of each wearer.) The only problem with Casa Valentina is a rather big one: Fierstein sets up 80 percent of his story, then doesn’t know how to finish it for maximum impact."

http://www.timeout.com/newyork/theater/casa-valentina
Scratch and claw for every day you're worth! Make them drag you screaming from life, keep dreaming You'll live forever here on earth.
broadwaydevil
Broadway Legend
joined:2/16/11
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 08:15pm
Matthew Murray is mostly positive

http://www.talkinbroadway.com/world/CasaValentina2014.html

"Fierstein and his characters do want to have fun, of course, but for all of them this is life-or-death stuff that will either validate and emasculate who they are. That lesson is never lost amid either the comedy or controversies, which occur with roughly equal frequency in Casa Valentina. These are real people with real struggles who crave real recognition; if that's the test for genuine humanity onstage, each and every one of them passes with flying colors."

Scratch and claw for every day you're worth! Make them drag you screaming from life, keep dreaming You'll live forever here on earth.
mc1227
Broadway Legend
joined:7/29/07
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 08:59pm
Saw this play last week and am still thinking about it. Harvey has once again provided a thought provoking and clever story about the unconventional. Just love him..
"are you two going to renew your vows"? "Why, did they expire??"
bjh2114
Broadway Legend
joined:4/19/06
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:17pm
NY Post is out early and is mixed to positive (3 of 4 stars):

"The show, tightly directed by Joe Mantello, cruises through its first act, where Fierstein neatly balances pathos, killer one-liners — “I’m so pretty I should be set to music” — and a battle of ideas after Charlotte reveals her agenda. Things bog down after intermission, when there are one too many earnest speeches and saintly Rita admits to an unease with her marriage.

Still, the entire cast is a delight, making us empathize with the characters’ plights, dreams and journeys. And it’s especially fun to watch Birney — a specialist of milquetoast characters — play a villainess with a messiah complex. Paradise may be lost by the end, but it’s quite a ride to see it go down."


http://nypost.com/2014/04/23/casa-valentina-cross-dresses-and-impresses/
bjh2114
Broadway Legend
joined:4/19/06
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:19pm
Entertainment Weekly is mostly positive (B+):

"A quasi-witchhunt follows, setting a violent and sobering climax in motion. In a play full of proud fakeries, the story hits the loudest false note. Fierstein's explosive resolution feels rushed and less authentic to the characters than the Donna Reed wigs on their heads. Still, the most lasting impressions of Casa Valentina are good ones: Fierstein's meticulous dialogue, Joe Mantello's smooth and confident direction, the cast's flawless performances. And if the characters teach us anything, it's that confidence and charm can cover a multitude of imperfections."

http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20364394_20809764,00.html
Mr Roxy
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:27pm
From what I can see, the critics liked the show but were not thrilled with the ending. Anyone else feel the same way?

Cynicism is an unpleasant way of saying the truth - Lillian Hellman.
Updated On: 4/23/14 at 09:27 PM
CoreyRyan3
Stand-by
joined:5/2/13
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:40pm
Hollywood Reporter is mostly positive:

"seems a workshop or two away from being fully realized. Which is disappointing, because there's no shortage of snappy comedy, tenderness, highly individualized character studies and thematic ambition here."

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/review/harvey-fiersteins-casa-valentina-theater-698482

Updated On: 4/23/14 at 09:40 PM
swoboda
Chorus Member
joined:4/26/11
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:40pm
I found the piece of business with Valentina at the mirror right as the play ended to be a rather poor choice. It was too ambiguous and left me wondering what her/his reaction meant. Otherwise, I found most of the play engrossing .
Mr Roxy
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:50pm
Exactly. It was a non ending. You leave scratching your head
Cynicism is an unpleasant way of saying the truth - Lillian Hellman.
oncemorewithfeeling2
Stand-by
joined:4/25/13
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:52pm
As an entire piece, I thought it was wonderful. The acting was tremendous and Fierstein has crafted a great piece. The ending, however, didn't leave me entirely satisfied. After intermission, it slows down and the last 15% of the show had me going, "...eh." Still, I really enjoyed it. Page, Ebert, and Collum give great performances, as does Mare Winningham.

It's a very solid 3 star/B or B+ show.
tom2000a
Chorus Member
joined:11/10/12
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:58pm
I saw the play and liked it very, very much. I don't think are talking about just the very ending being weak (with Rita at the mirror) but most of the second act. I guess I have to agree with them, I think things do become a little contrived and "theatrical" in the second act. It's not a perfect play but it's a good play. I thought Mare Winningham was dull ( I am glad she isn't being singled out for her "understated" performance) and I thought Patrick Page (with that VOICE) gives an overly flamboyant performance. I would not have cast either of them. I think in retrospect John Cullum's speech/scene about signing the paper which discriminates against homosexuals is the most touching scene in the play. I urge you all to see this play. It deals with a very human experience that I have never seen on stage before. I liked the ending. We don't know what is going to happen with Rita and his wife. I assumed they were going to stay together. She inferred she was staying.

Updated On: 4/23/14 at 09:58 PM
swoboda
Chorus Member
joined:4/26/11
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 09:58pm
Well, George/Valentina is probably more conflicted than the others which is saying a lot. So perhaps a state of flux is the more realistic resolution to a story of uneasy personal accommodations.
AndrewAndrew
Stand-by
joined:11/20/12
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 10:10pm
A resort for heterosexual transvestites in the Catskills? No, it’s not an episode of Mad Men, it’s Casa Valentina, the new play from Harvey Fierstein. Fierstein has given us plenty of perspectives on the LGBTQ experience over the years, but Casa mines new depths and reaches for new heights. Does it “pass” or does it stumble in heels too high for it’s own good? Find out in our full review!


Clck Here for Full Review of Casa Valentina
Updated On: 4/23/14 at 10:10 PM
CoreyRyan3
Stand-by
joined:5/2/13
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 10:27pm
New York Times is up and it's Brantley. He's mostly positive.

"A beguilingly gentle magic whispers amid the speechifying of “Casa Valentina,” Harvey Fierstein’s prolix play about cross-dressing in the Catskills in the early 1960s. This intermittent, quiet enchantment is generated by men who otherwise tend to obstreperousness. But put any one of them in front of a mirror, with a tube of lipstick and some eyeliner, and he falls into a wordless rapture, as silent and luminous as a newly lighted candle."

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/24/theater/casa-valentina-a-new-play-by-harvey-fierstein.html?_r=0
brdway411
Broadway Star
joined:2/24/14
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 10:32pm
I thought the ending was abrupt but good. SPOILER@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@






It leaves you wondering if Valentina was finally taking over for George
swoboda
Chorus Member
joined:4/26/11
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 10:43pm
I think Brantley raises a point that is intriguing. If the plot had dispensed with the whole post office mail fraud business, and just concentrated on the conflicts arising from each individual character's personal feelings vis a vis each other, I think a more concentrated energy would result, illuminating the issues in a deeper way. The pornographic envelope sidetracked my focus on the characters and, honestly, confused me. I'll admit though, I think Ben Brantley is brilliant and I tend to generally agree with many of his observations.
Smaxie
Broadway Legend
joined:9/26/05
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 10:49pm
Brantley reads to me as positive for the cast and production, polite but mixed on the play.
Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.
CoreyRyan3
Stand-by
joined:5/2/13
Casa Valentina Reviews
Posted: 4/23/14 at 10:59pm
"Brantley reads to me as positive for the cast and production, polite but mixed on the play."

Agreed, just sort of combined it into "mostly positive". But I can change it if need be.