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Previewed 7 January 2009, Opened 28 January 2009, Closed 21 February 2009 at the Old Vic Theatre in London
The World Premiere of Joe Sutton's play Complicit in London directed by Kevin Spacey and starring Richard Dreyfuss, Elizabeth McGovern and David Suchet.
There's a hard road, there's an easy road - which would you take? Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Ben Kritzer finds himself in front of a Supreme Court Grand Jury faced with his own choice. As liberties are stripped away can you ever know what is being perpetrated in your name? The Old Vic's Artistic Director Kevin Spacey returns to the theatre's stage to direct the world premiere of Joe Sutton's new play - a thrilling look at our current political climate.
The cast for Complicit in London features Richard Dreyfuss as 'Ben Kritzer', Elizabeth McGovern as 'Judith Brown' and David Suchet as 'Roger Cowan'. It is directed 'in-the-round' by Kevin Spacey with designs by Rob Howell, lighting by Howard Harrison, projections by Jon Driscoll and sound by Simon Baker.
"Call me old-fashioned, but when one buys a ticket for a play, one enters into a deal. The actors act, the audience listens. If an actor is plugged into an earpiece the relationship changes dramatically. For a start, it makes it almost impossible for Richard Dreyfuss to inhabit the role. He just hangs around the stage, presumably awaiting instructions. I was so busy worrying about his ability to utter a single word that it was hard to concentrate on anything else. Every pause felt like an eternity, and I was terrified that - with Waterloo just up the road and radio interference being what it is - he would suddenly announce that the delayed 7.35 to Surbiton would be leaving from Platform Six. Of course, Dreyfuss is getting on, but the real reason the poor fellow might have found it difficult to get a grip on his lines is because Joe Sutton's writing is so forgettable, not just banal but also repetitive. As his fretful wife, Elizabeth McGovern, young enough to be his daughter, has to wring her hands a lot and say: 'Ben . . . but Ben ... but Ben.' Even the super-supple David Suchet, as the double-dealing lawyer defending Ben, seems uncharacteristically halting. The play begins with 9/11 and pretends to be concerned with whether or not Ben should have revealed America's crimes against humanity at such a time, which may be why Spacey thought the play might be interesting. It's not and his production is a shocker." The Mail on Sunday
"Joe Sutton's Complicit examines the moral agony of a respected journalist called Benjamin Kritzer, pressured hard by the US authorities to reveal a CIA source... It looks like a good setup for a serious debate play. Richard Dreyfuss, as Kritzer, is compelling and sincere, and David Suchet is excellent as his worldly, commanding lawyer. There's a lot of lazy, undifferentiated swearing, though, and the dialogue is often poor.... This is a deeply flawed and untrustworthy play, for one simple reason. As a programme note points out: " Complicit is a work of fiction. It contains allegations about the policies of the United States government and its war on terror that are solely the invention of its author." Yes, we are in the foggy land of docudrama." The Sunday Times
Complicit in London at the Old Vic Theatre previewed from 7 January 2009, opened on 28 January 2009 and closed on 21 February 2009.