Up | Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Downstairs Theater | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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When: Tuesdays-Sundays. Continues through Aug. 23 2009
Price: $20-$70
A writer and producer for the Friday Night Lights TV series, playwright Bridget Carpenter deals in strained, televisionesque schematics to tell the story of Walter Griffin, frustrated inventor, who once piloted a lawn chair rigged with helium-filled weather balloons to 16,000 feet, but now does little except lament his inability to fly again. (I guess balloons and helium are no longer an option.) In Carpenter's world of belabored metaphors, Walter's practical mail-carrier wife is entirely earthbound, and his 15-year-old slacker son is entirely untethered. Carpenter seems to start the play anew every 20 minutes, as though searching for a point. If one exists, director Anna D. Shapiro and her entertaining cast can't find it--perhaps in part because the actors are inexplicably confined to an upstage corner much of the evening. --Justin Hayford
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