Edward Karam
October 10, 2003 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Thing About Men

type
Stage
Current Status
In Season
run date
08/27/03
performer
Marc Kudisch
director
Mark Clements

We gave it a C-

Based on the popular 1985 German film ”Men,” this lackluster chamber musical mixes shopworn conflicts — sensitivity versus selfishness, art versus commercialism — with slapstick and bouts of male bonding. The usually likable Marc Kudisch (”Thoroughly Modern Millie”) plays a cheating adman who discovers his wife is having her own affair. Quicker than you can say ”preposterous,” the hubby stalks her boho boyfriend (easygoing Ron Bohmer) and, learning his rival needs a roommate, muscles his way into the artist’s life and loft with breathtaking abrasiveness. The songs — from ”I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change” team Jimmy Roberts and Joe DiPietro — range from touching and tuneful to mercilessly rhymed. But the show seems to think the husband’s antics make him a colorful hero; trouble is, the painter has the more soulful palette.

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