Tuesday, August 20 th, 2019 at 00:08 am 



Ben Stiller is Artie Shaughnessy, a zookeeper and wannabe songwriter, who is trying to cope with a schizophrenic wife (Falco), an impatient girlfriend (Leigh) and a visit from the Pope, all while sustaining his dream of hitting it big. THE HOUSE OF BLUE LEAVES is a satirical take on celebrity, religion, and the frequent merging of the two.


House of Blue Leaves is written by John Guare and stars Ben Stiller, Edie  Falco, and Jennifer Jason Leigh. It’s also got Marybeth Hurt in it and Allison Pill, whose names you may or may not recognize. The problem about this, to be quite honest, is not the writing, but to be quite honest I think it’s the direction in that everybody is in a different play. Just seems farce that needs to be played one of two ways. I think you can either do it over the top silly where everybody is in on the joke, or you can play it completely straight and let the audience sort of feel superior, but you can’t do neither and you can’t do both, and I think that’s what happened here. Everybody seems to be in a different play. Edie Falco is terrific, but she’s in a different play. She’s not playing this with any humor, and she’s playing a seriously deranged woman who is very sad and unhappy. Ben Stiller is playing in Broadway Danny. Jennifer Jason Lee is playing  in the Last Exit to Brooklyn. Everybody seems to be in a different play, and when that happens, I think you’ve got a problem with direction. So as much as I would like to like this, I think it just doesn’t make any sense the way that it was directed, so I gave it two stars, for the cast mostly.