The Jacksonian | Profiles Theatre, Main Stage | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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click to enlarge Tim Curtis and Rachel Sledd in The Jacksonian

Tim Curtis and Rachel Sledd in The Jacksonian

Michael Brosilow

When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through Oct. 11 2015
Price: $35-$40
The 2012 world-premiere staging of Beth Henley's black comedy starred Ed Harris, Amy Madigan, Bill Pullman, Glenne Headley, and a remarkable young unknown named Juliet Brett. It was still awful. Pullman, especially, gave his character a sort of redneck-baroque twist that made him unwatchable. So OK: These things happen. True West got a lousy first production too. Then a small but mighty Steppenwolf Theatre killed with it in 1982. There are a lot of interesting curves and angles to Henley's tale of southern white folks behaving badly as the 60s civil rights movement coalesces around them. What it needs is a Steppenwolf of its own to make them work. Well, maybe next time. Joe Jahraus's noir-tinged production misses most of the menace and all of the subtlety—though Tim Curtis has some bright moments as a dentist suffering from a sort of gingivitis of the soul. —Tony Adler

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