History Boys Review
GO FOR :: English accents! A farcical French brothel scene! Dominic Cooper as the dreamy Dakin! Samuel Barnett as the uncomfortably homosexual Posner! Two actors from the Harry Potter movies! A smattering of song and dance (accompanied by the very talented Jamie Parker-as-Scripps on the piano)! Unusually perceptive (yet still hilarious) one-liners!
THE GIST :: 8 smart (and smart-assed) boys at grammar school in the North of England return to school for extra cramming and classes to prep themselves for the rigorous entrance exam that will get them accepted at Oxford and Cambridge. They’re guided in this by Hector (played by Harry Potter‘s Uncle Vernon, Richard Griffiths), who is filled with deep appreciation of literature, culture, and motorbiking (among other things); Irwin, a young teacher hired because he knows just how to twist history into a standout essay; the Headmaster who’s only interested in the bottom-line; and Frances De La Tour (HP6‘s Madame Maxine) as the sensible female voice.
THE TAKEAWAY :: Well-acted (and well-staged if you do not sit in the first 20 rows on the far-right), History Boys shouldn’t be missed while it’s on Broadway with its current cast. It’s a really wonderful play that illuminates what our views on culture have become in a way that is both perceptive and witty, heartbreaking and hopeful. And no, you don’t have to go see the play twice like I did!