Atlantic Theater Company’s new season will include the world premiere of a musical based on the best-selling novel “The Secret Life of Bees” and the American premiere of a family drama starring Isabelle Huppert.
Ms. Huppert will appear in Florian Zeller’s “The Mother” next February, in a production directed by Trip Cullman. The Academy Award-nominated actress will play the mother of grown children who finds that the world “is crumbling around her,” according to the theater’s announcement. Mr. Zeller is a French playwright whose work has been steadily produced in London; Christopher Hampton is the translator.
Mr. Zeller’s “The Father” ran on Broadway in 2016, earning Frank Langella a Tony Award for best actor in the title role.
Great news, I'll be sure to see it next year. Really liked her performance in Genet's The Maids, back in 2014, where she had an almost childlike energy to her, quite unlike most of her film performances.
Huppert is terrific––a deeply fraught, perverse, often hilarious and playful performance. It’s a spiraling, highly energized, tragic portrayal of a mother who feels abandoned by her family. The play takes a surreal approach, with repeated sequencing and lapses of fantasy - motivated by the character's pill popping and slipping sanity. Huppert keeps it tense and engaging, but the play overall, the concept and dialogue, I found a little sophomoric. The supporting cast weren't anything special. Good thing, Huppert is on stage for the entire 80min duration (no intermission). It's also a very small venue so you can pick up on a lot of her micro touches.
Funny story - there was a woman and her young son sitting near me and I was thinking well this play is sort of slightly disturbing not very suitable for a kid, but later found out....it was Lolita Chammah and her six y/o son, Huppert's daughter and grandson!
Also........interestingly I watched Malina (1991) the night before, also stars Huppert, and I can't imagine a better complement to The Mother, with their surreal narrative structure and similarly mentally fraying protagonists. Blown away by both performances, but um, especially Malina, which I think is one of her very best - so extreme, unhinged, dangerous feeling too, and very, very funny.... I'd say it's a must see for fans. Movie itself is very well shot, but also very perplexing and overlong, definitely indebted to Resnais, a little Zulawski too maybe.