For a minute, you’ll swear you’ve walked into a Chekhov play. An extended family in a sleepy backwoods setting, plaintively recalling the good old days, fantasizing about going somewhere…anywhere. But this is not turn-of-the-century Russia; it’s 1970s Missouri. And the playwright behind this masterful 1978 tragicomedy is Lanford Wilson (Burn This). The plot engine may be contrived (the much-fretted-over spreading of a loved one’s ashes), but Wilson’s characters are irresistibly uncommon: a teacher/Vietnam vet who walks on wooden legs (Robert Sean Leonard, brooding beautifully), his flower-child-turned-single-mom sister, their absentminded aunt who refrigerates her husband’s remains. Yet under the guidance of director Jo Bonney, eccentric personalities yield mannered overacting (most egregiously from Parker Posey, whose high-strung heiress is all fluttery hands and grand gestures), and this revival goes from Chekhovian to sitcom-ian.
Fifth of JulyFor a minute, you'll swear you've walked into a Chekhov play. An extended family in a sleepy backwoods setting, plaintively recalling the good old days,...Fifth of JulyLanford WilsonFor a minute, you'll swear you've walked into a Chekhov play. An extended family in a sleepy backwoods setting, plaintively recalling the good old days,...2003-02-14
Starring: Jessalyn Gilsig, David Harbour, Robert Sean Leonard, Parker Posey; Director: Jo Bonney; Author: Lanford Wilson; Opening Date: 02/03/2003
Posted February 14 2003 — 12:00 AM EST
- See Nic Cage in his 'Superman Lives' costume
- Ava DuVernay decides not to direct 'Black Panther': 'We just didn't see eye to eye'
- LeBron James: Hollywood's newest MVP
- Know this week's pop culture news? Take EW's quiz to find out
- 10 celebrity memoirs to devour this summer
- Celebrate Independence Day with Steven Tyler's new country video
- 'Bible' series won't return to NBC
- 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice': 6 EW exclusive photos
- Comic-Con 2015 preview: 10 panels we can't wait to see
- 'Seinfeld' faves: Where are they now?
- 14 high school movies that defined their year
- 26 TV faves you forgot were in 'Seinfeld' episodes
- Miranda Kerr, Ewan & Chiwetel, Karlie Kloss & More!