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The Front Page Broadway Reviews

THE FRONT PAGE Broadway Reviews

6.91
CRITICS RATING:
7.92
READERS RATING:
5.89
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Reviews of The Front Page on Broadway. See what all the critics had to say and see all the ratings for The Front Page including the New York Times and More...

Critics' Reviews

10

Broadway review: The Front Page grabs headlines with Nathan Lane and John Slattery

From: TimeOut NY | By: David Cote | Date: 10/20/2016

Look, we're all depressed this election year. We're sick of seeing know-nothing politicians; of hearing obscene language insulting women and minorities; and we're disgusted by the media's bottomless appetite for sensationalism. The only antidote I can suggest for this national malaise is a visit to the Broadhurst Theatre to see the 5,000-volt revival of The Front Page. What's it about? Oh, all that stuff I just mentioned-but whipped into a hellacious comic frenzy by one of the best acting ensembles you and I may ever see. Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur's 1928 evisceration of the newspaper racket is a summit of American screwball comedy, and Nathan Lane, John Slattery and two dozen other actors climb it and plant their flag. It's strange to feel so invigorated and refreshed by a spectacle of rampant cynicism in which love, truth and loyalty are systematically demolished. But see this brutally brilliant masterpiece, and you'll be inoculated against the viciousness of the world.

9

As ‘The Front Page’ turns, so does agile comedy

From: Washington Post | By: Peter Marks | Date: 10/20/2016

So I left the theater feeling the rush of some exhilarating teamwork still coursing freshly through my brain. Floating up there most buoyantly is the impression of Lane's priceless turn as Walter Burns - an editor so voraciously news hungry he could survive purely on a diet of scoops. In boxy pin-striped suit and bushy black mustache, Lane hurls Burns's blunt-force insults and bolts of impotent rage in all directions, with the timing and élan that have made him one of the great comic actors of our age. Slattery, playing the roguish Hildy Johnson, Burns's restive star reporter at the Chicago Examiner, reveals again the gift for the kind of swaggering masculinity he displayed as Roger Sterling on "Mad Men." Mays and Baker, too, are deployed here to maximum enjoyable effect as a pair of courthouse reporters - Mays portraying a skittish germaphobe, Baker a diligent leg man.

9

'Front Page' on Broadway with Nathan Lane: No need for rewrite!

From: Chicago Tribune | By: Chris Jones | Date: 10/20/2016

He had the advantage of the John the Baptist that is Robert Morse and, in his wily partner John Slattery, the oldest, driest and most cynically unlikely Hildy Johnson that ever snagged a scoop. But at the Broadhurst Theatre on Thursday night, America's master farceur grabbed Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur's creaking, dramatic homage to the beleaguered but indomitable craft and calling of Chicago newspapering by the scruff of its scraggly 1928 neck. And - nearly a century on - Nathan Lane declared it to still be beautiful.

8

Review: ‘The Front Page’ Is Diverting, but Don’t Stop the Presses

From: New York Times | By: Ben Brantley | Date: 10/20/2016

No doubt Walter would inform me that you, my impatient audience, have already stopped reading by now. But though "The Front Page" is all about the adrenaline rush that turns journalists into deadline junkies, it's hard to work up the proper urgency about Jack O'Brien's production. So to finish the thought I started before I so rudely interrupted myself, the latest edition of "The Front Page" is ... diverting. Pretty darn good. At moments, very funny indeed.

8

Review: Nathan Lane saves ‘The Front Page’ from fish wrap

From: Associated Press | By: Mark Kennedy | Date: 10/20/2016

It's not really quick or savvy enough to keep up with the times, but once in a while it's sort of fun to hang with at a bar, listening to its lewd, alcohol-inspired stories. Sure, ultimately it smells a little off and it's hopelessly old-fashioned, like a weird uncle who shows up on holidays.

8

Aisle View: Stop The Presses!

From: Huffington Post | By: Steven Suskin | Date: 10/20/2016

This production, happily, fires on all cylinders. We can't exactly call the cast of twenty-one (plus bit player/understudies) an all-star cast; they are not, all, what we might consider stars. But they are comic all-stars, anyway. To say that Walter Burns-that iconic, hard-boiled city editor who set the mold for hard-boiled city editors on stage and screen for the last eighty-eight years-is played by Nathan Lane is to give you a pretty good idea of what director Jack O'Brien has in mind. No matter that Lane doesn't enter, in the flesh, until well into the evening; his presence permeates the play from the moment we hear him bellowing over a battered and bruised candlestick phone.

8

BWW Review: Nathan Lane and John Slattery Lead A Raucously Funny Revival Of THE FRONT PAGE

From: BroadwayWorld | By: Michael Dale | Date: 10/20/2016

In between, a terrific cast bangs out the gritty, wise-cracking dialogue of newspapermen turned playwrights Ben Hecht andCharles MacArthur with the precision of freshly greased keys striking at the platen of a Royal typewriter. Nathan Lane and John Slattery lead the way, but the twenty-five member ensemble is made up of name stars and below-the-title theatre pros who each contribute solidly to a rousing production.

8

John Slattery, Nathan Lane Headline Revival of Broadway Classic 'The Front Page'

From: NBC New York | By: Robert Kahn | Date: 10/20/2016

But, the pros in "The Front Page" know how to manage the material and deliver an ink-stained good time. This is a period piece that hearkens back to a time when reporters carried flasks and an HR rep would be tossed out a window if she introduced a dialogue about harassment or proper workplace behavior.

8

Theater Review: The Front Page Knocks ’Em Dead

From: Vulture | By: Jesse Green | Date: 10/20/2016

The Front Page is a classic not only for its playability but also for its timelessness: No one will ever need footnotes to understand the idea of journalists competing venally to expose venal politicians. What they may need, though, is internet access, because the presses that printed Atkinson's review, and the reviews of every Broadway revival since then until this one, are as obsolete as the typewriters and candlestick telephones and "Get me rewrite!" commands depicted in the play. So may theater critics be. Therefore, let me use my end-times platform to contradict Atkinson, who advised "squeamish folk" to stay home. On the contrary, squeamish folk will love it, and when it comes to politics and journalism, who isn't squeamish?

7

Nathan Lane’s The News In Scott Rudin’s Star-Packed ‘Front Page’ Revival

From: Deadline | By: Jeremy Gerard | Date: 10/20/2016

With his jauntily angled fedora and suit jacket slung over his shoulder, Slattery comes across as more of a Rat Pack swinger than a flapper-following flirt just before the Jazz Age was snuffed out by Black Monday. But it suits him and he's an instant bright spot among the malcontents who've been forced into a long night awaiting the 7 AM hanging of Earl Williams, an illiterate white man who has been convicted of killing a black cop. Hildy's plans inspire caustic merriment among his pals, who insist it won't be long until he "has seven kids, a mortgage and belongs to a country club." There's also much ribbing of New York newspapers, especially the New York Times ("might as well work for a bank," one says), inside jokes from two authors who knew newspapers, Chicago and its Second City neuroses better than anyone.

Director Jack O'Brien begins and ends each act with a tableau. Until Lane arrives, the action in between those stylish freezes rarely unthaws. The direction is stately when it needs to be raucous. Likewise, Douglas W. Schmidt's set is grand, not grungy enough to be a press room in a prison. Occasionally, a few supporting players break through. Robert Morse in the cameo of a boozed-up messenger emerges as lower than the worn linoleum. Sherie Rene Scott goes period with an uncanny Joan Crawford impersonation, right out of "Rain." Jefferson Mays, once again, recycles Franklin Pangborn, playing a persnickety poem-writing (wink, wink) reporter. Oddly enough, Mays received a big ovation at his entrance. Were people applauding his recent "Oslo" triumph, or did they think Lane was reprising his performance from "The Nance"? From a few rows away, the two men look a lot alike.

7

Nathan Lane can only try to save ‘Front Page': theater review

From: NY Daily News | By: Joe Dziemianowicz | Date: 10/20/2016

For the play's first hour and forty-five minutes, a supporting cast of comic pros who portray hard-boiled reporters are mired in mostly expositional banter that goes in circles and stalls. John Goodman fares no better as a shifty sheriff and basically just relies on a high-pitched voice that's half as amusing as it's meant to be.

6

‘Front Page’ review: This Broadway revival falls flat

From: amNY | By: Matt Windman | Date: 10/20/2016

Jack O'Brien's lively and lavish production holds nothing back in terms of busy movement and broad comedy, but the three-act play does not hold up so well by today's standards, containing fewer one-liners and much more exposition than you'd expect from a comedy. I often found myself admiring the production but unable to enjoy it. Slattery is an ideal Hildy, with a cool and unfazed aura. Lane steals the final third of the show with an over-the-top performance with shades of Max Bialystock (his shifty and shameless character from "The Producers). Goodman is loud, but strangely ineffective, relying heavily on a country accent.