REVIEW ROUND-UP: Don Juan in Soho at Wyndham’s Theatre

In Features, London theatre, Native, News, Opinion, Plays, Reviews by Emma ClarendonLeave a Comment

David Tennant stars in this West End premiere production written and directed by Patrick Marber – but what have critics had to say about it? 

The Independent: “David Tennant is every bit as magnificent in the title role here as he was as Hamlet in Gregory Doran’s celebrated RSC production.”

Radio Times: “But it’s the scenes between Tennant and Scarborough that work the best — their effortless timing is an absolute joy.”

Time Out: “It is clearly somewhat misogynist, but it’s a misogyny that slips down easy in a play that is in many ways light, frothy and defined by its charismatic lead.”

The Stage: “It’s a shallow and dispiriting portrait of a shallow and dispiriting man. And while it seeks to charm and outrage in equal measure, it ends up being charmless and creepy.”

The Guardian: “What is unnerving, however, is Tennant’s capacity to make us empathise with an impenitent egotist driven by sexual obsession.”

Variety: “Tennant’s such an endearing presence that, no matter how outrageous Don Juan’s behavior or how outdated his attitudes, he has the gilded charm to get away with it.”

London Theatre.co.uk: “I’m afraid the laughter, despite the agility of Marber’s wordplay and David Tennant’s delivery of it, as DJ kept sticking in my throat, though its fair to say that others around me were laughing heartily.”

Exeunt Magazine: “For all that parts of the play are very funny, though, overall it doesn’t quite work. DJ is neither loveable rogue nor compelling anti-hero, he’s presented a selfish, sex-addicted man-child. For all Tennant’s charisma and charm, that is not an attractive prospect.”

Evening Standard:  “It’s Tennant who dominates. He brings an exciting physicality and air of sexy mischief to the odious DJ”

The Times: “Rakish David Tennant does make a very good bad boy.”

Broadway World: “this is a vigorous romp that titillates but never quite delivers.”

The Arts Desk: “Tennant conveys the visceral delights of sexual pursuit, and of sexual conquest.”

The Upcoming: “to see David Tennant carry this play makes it worth watching; both he and Scarborough emerge from this production with their dignity intact.”

Hollywood Reporter: “Yet there’s no denying the ferocious comedy of Marber’s treatment, and there’s nothing quite like an evening of guilty laughter.”

The FT: “Marber’s revival may not cut as deeply as some might wish, but it is certainly sharp.”

The Daily Mail: “It may be exotic and handsome but ultimately it is as hooked on shallowness as Don Juan.”

British Theatre.com: “If, at the end of it all, it doesn’t quite touch your heart, well, that’s because it probably doesn’t have one, any more than the poor old Don himself.  Try to forgive it.  The rest is loads of fun.”

Theatre Weekly: “In the second act Tennant launches a scathing diatribe on everything from President Trump to vloggers and iPhones, this summed up his performance perfectly; gripping, passionate and definitely a guilty pleasure.”

The Mirror: “He alone makes it worth a visit. Expect a sensational performance, just don’t expect to be reunited with the good doctor.”

London News Online: “Stylish, sleezy and splendidly sordid, this Don Juan isn’t someone you’d want as a friend, but you wont be able to resist his detestable demeanor.”

London Theatre1: “It’s bawdy, it’s lewd, and in places it’s frankly improper. Not exactly a family show, then, but nonetheless a forthright and sharp production.”

Live Theatre Uk.co.uk: “There is a deal to enjoy here, but it is not really a production which justifies the revival of the play.”

Emma Clarendon on Twitter
Emma Clarendon
Emma Clarendon studied drama through A-Level before deciding she was much better suited to writing about theatre than appearing onstage. She’s written for a number of online publications ever since, including The News Hub and Art Info. Emma set up her own blog, Love London Love Culture, in April 2015 and tweets at theatre_emma.
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Emma Clarendon on Twitter
Emma Clarendon
Emma Clarendon studied drama through A-Level before deciding she was much better suited to writing about theatre than appearing onstage. She’s written for a number of online publications ever since, including The News Hub and Art Info. Emma set up her own blog, Love London Love Culture, in April 2015 and tweets at theatre_emma.