Friday, June 17, 2011

POW! (Play Of The Week)

The Long Red Road
by Brett C. Leonard

Sammy drank. Sammy drove. Sammy crashed. Sammy ran. Sammy left everyone else to clean up the mess. In this gritty, gut-wrenching drama, we take a look at two sides of a family torn apart by an alcohol-fueled tragedy: the side that left and the side that stayed behind. Is there any chance of reconciliation? And, if so, what is the cost?

Brett C. Leonard’s The Long Red Road follows the wreckage of Sammy, a man trying to obliterate his past. Seeking refuge on a Lakota reservation, Sammy has submitted to the escape of alcohol. Meanwhile, his brother, Bob, and his girlfriend, Anna, deal with the carnage left in Sammy’s wake. As they struggle to put back the pieces, Sammy continues to self-destruct, and we see the boundaries of unconditional love.

Riding on the foundation of Shepard and Fornes, Leonard pairs harsh, demanding language with a setting that’s just as formidable. By using short, episodic scenes across the span of Sammy’s devastation, we see a panoramic view of the results, and are confronted by the reality of that picture. Not all stories are made to have a happy ending, though that happiness depends entirely on your point of view.

Full of great moments and intense, challenging scenes, The Long Red Road is not for the faint of heart. Think Leaving Las Vegas. Without the pleasant scenes. Great monologue material for a mature 13-year old girl and a good scene for late-20s/early-30s man and woman.

3M, 3W

Reviewed by Ben G.

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