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Review Roundup: "Outside Mullingar"

Twenty years ago this fall, the Geffen Playhouse launched its inaugural season with John Patrick Shanley’s comedy Four Dogs and a Bone. It’s fitting, then, that Shanley’s latest play, Outside Mullingar, is part of the Geffen’s 20th anniversary season.

Outside Mullingar has been hailed as Pulitzer, Tony and Academy Award-winning playwright Shanley’s best work since the arresting Doubt. In the wry romantic comedy Outside Mullingar, family farms, feuds and fences have separated neighbors Rosemary and Anthony since childhood. But as the heather blooms in the Irish countryside, unexpected charms are unearthed — and it’s proven once again that love, early or late, always arrives on time.

Curious? Keep reading …

Weary, Brooding and Made for Each Other
Mr. Shanley’s finest work since DoubtOutside Mullingar is a lighter, slighter play, a softhearted comedy freckled with dark reflections on the unsatisfactory nature of life and the thorns of love. But Mr. Shanley’s lyrical writing, and the flawless production, directed by Doug Hughes for Manhattan Theater Club, give such consistent pleasure that even though we know the equations that define romcoms will add up to the familiar sums, we are happy to watch as they do. Continue reading here …

It may not be as dramatic as Doubt or as funny as Moonstruck, but John Patrick Shanley has not written a more beautiful or loving play than Outside Mullingar. Continue reading here …

Hitting a sweet spot that recalls his Oscar-winning screenplay for Moonstruck, John Patrick Shanley’s Outside Mullingar is a charmer of a play about a hesitant romance stalled by petty grievances and misunderstandings. Unapologetic sentimentality without too much treacle isn’t easy to do, but the playwright pulls it off with confidence. Continue reading here …

Outside Mullingar: Spark of intensity lights an Irish fire
… a very enjoyable piece of theater about the moment in life when you figure out you have maybe one chance left to snag the lover who might make you happy, and there is no time left for anything coy. The challenge in this play, as in life, is that desperation rarely makes you more attractive in the eyes of a potential mate. Continue reading here …

Outside Mullingar is one of those generations-of-country-folk-on-the-old-farm plays, and it’s dandy. Here we have a tale of destiny and death, mixed with an offbeat moonstruck romance. Mr. Shanley — a Pulitzer, Tony and Oscar-winner for his 2004 play Doubt — first attracted widespread acclaim with his screenplay for the 1987 Brooklyn-based charmer, Moonstruck. I don’t know that he’s tried to charm us in this manner in the interim, but with Outside Mullingar he captures the same sort of magic. Continue reading here …

Outside Mullingar opens November 10 in the Gil Cates Theater at the Geffen Playhouse. To purchase tickets, please click here.