Review: Frank Langella ferocious in ‘King Lear’

January 17, 2014 5:12 AM

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Naturalistic direction by Angus Jackson allows the play’s insights to resonate with clarity, as Lear “crawls toward death” while losing everything that has defined his sense of self for decades, including his hubris. Yet even when slipping into madness or playfully rolling his eyes, Langella remains a robust, regal presence. He gives searing poignancy to Lear’s eventual humbling and subsequent deep, wailing sorrow over Cordelia’s death.

Isabella Laughland is a sweet, childlike Cordelia, gravely emitting innocence. In sharp contrast, Catherine McCormack as Goneril and Lauren O’Neil as Regan are skillfully repugnant as her greedy, duplicitous sisters. The pair’s blood lust increases along with their false, vicious smiles, as they dis...

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