Theater Review: Constellations Puts Jake Gyllenhaal in a Rom-Com Tesseract

January 14, 2015 3:40 AM

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Theater Review: Constellations Puts Jake Gyllenhaal in a Rom-Com Tesseract

Would you like to see a two-hander in which Jake Gyllenhaal plays a hunky but bashful British beekeeper, hemming and half-smiling, while Ruth Wilson, so recently embaubled with a Golden Globe for The Affair, plays a charmingly ditzy astrophysicist? Would you like to watch the pair meet cute at a barbecue, grope their way toward romance, survive infidelity, and face tragedy together? I would; it sounds like an engaging play. Unfortunately it’s not the one now running at the Manhattan Theatre Club under the title Constellations, even though all those things do happen in it. But since Nick Payne, the author, is unwilling to give us that romantic trifle, this delightful, beautifully acted, and infuriating new drama is so much more, and less.

MARIANNE: Despite our best efforts, there are certain microscopic observations that just cannot be predicted absolutely. Now, potentially, one way of explaining this is to draw the conclusion that, at any given moment, several outcomes can co-exist simultaneously.

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