Life and Limb | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Arts & Culture » Performing Arts Review

Life and Limb


Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe


Keith Reddin's uncompromising 1984 black comedy offers a bleak look at damaged goods in the optimistic Eisenhower era, chronicling the bad breaks befalling a one-armed Korean war veteran afflicted with post-traumatic stress disorder and a confused, unfaithful wife. (The Iraq fiasco makes the play all too contemporary.) As if earth weren't noxious enough, the couple ends up literally going to hell, a cesspool of cruel conformism and regimentation. Though a tad too minimalist in its props and decor, Audrey Francis's earnest staging for Pine Box Theatre Company wisely takes the play's cruelty seriously, conferring some dignity on the damned all-American couple (Jonathan Edwards and Anne Adams, heartbreakingly ordinary). But the show's onstage smoking turns nostalgia toxic: we don't need this much accuracy. Through 2/12: Thu-Sat 8 PM, Sun 3 PM, Athenaeum Theatre, first-floor studio theater, 2936 N. Southport, 312-902-1500, $15, industry nights Fri 1/20 and 1/28.

Support Independent Chicago Journalism: Join the Reader Revolution

We speak Chicago to Chicagoans, but we couldn’t do it without your help. Every dollar you give helps us continue to explore and report on the diverse happenings of our city. Our reporters scour Chicago in search of what’s new, what’s now, and what’s next. Stay connected to our city’s pulse by joining the Reader Revolution.

Are you in?

  Reader Revolutionary $35/month →  
  Rabble Rouser $25/month →  
  Reader Radical $15/month →  
  Reader Rebel  $5/month  → 

Not ready to commit? Send us what you can!

 One-time donation  →