Every month, magazines tout new ways to look and feel younger. If a return to youth is indeed desired, the theater offers a remedy far more effective than any pill, unguent, or exercise plan. On the stage, grown-ups need only cross the threshold of their childhood homes to instantly revert to the petulance of adolescence, the whining of the tween years, the tears and mewling of a babe in arms. Witness adult brothers Paul (Aaron Roman Weiner) and Michael (Ryan Woodle) of Padraic Lilis’sTwo Thirds Home. After their mother’s funeral, a quick trip to grab some files soon devolves into griping, fist fights, and playing ball in the house. And they say you can’t go home again.
Mother’s obsequies and bequests have been complicated by the presence of her longtime lover, Sue (Peggy J. Scott). Sue and the sons have each inherited a third of the house. Though I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry recently topped box-office lists, in Lillis’s world the Sapphic relationship occasions secrecy, embarrassment, and hissy fits. Lillis comes to playwriting recently, and much of his structure and dialogue betrays the overstatement of the newcomer—repetition, histrionics. Director Giovanna Sardelli offers uninspired staging, though perhaps she can blame it on the script. In the spirit of the play, she might even say, “He started it!”
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 24, 2007