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Life and Limb

Steppenwolf Theatre
1650 N. Halsted Chicago

Wounded in Korea, Franklin returns home minus an arm and a future. With zero prospects for work and a faltering marriage, he struggles to regain his life. When he finally lands a job, Franklin finds himself working for a sadistic manufacturer of artificial limbs. Deadpan, cold-blooded and comic, Life and Limb is not your typical veteran’s story.

Thru - Jun 24, 2012

Stage: The Steppenwolf Garage

Show Type: Comedy/Drama

Box Office: 312-335-1650

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  Life and Limb Reviews

NewCity Chicago - Somewhat Recommended

"...Director Emily Campbell understands “Life and Limb’s” comic absurdity early on, allowing it to creep in for intermittent cameos, but, for the most part, she choses to delineate it decisively by act. Act one, though occasionally preposterous, is predominately natural, while act two is expressionistically visualized as a blinding, surreal dreamscape (set by Courtney O’Neill and lighting by William C. Kirkham). The ensemble of actors mostly cling to one style or the other. Rex is at her finest at the play’s most unrealistic, and Hooper, deftly possessing war’s harmful after effects, is a conversationalist through and through. Certainly a thought-provoking and enjoyable play, “Life and Limb” deserves a better conclusion."
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Johnny Oleksinski

ChicagoCritic - Recommended

"... This engrossing tale is a mixture of satire and realism that breaks conventional storytelling motifs. It part dark comedy and part absurdism with shallow underdeveloped characters do baffling things. The mixed focus hurts the production but Jurgen Hooper, Grace Rex and Chris Froseth’s performance make the show tolerable. If only Reddin’s writing wasn’t so bizarre. But there is enough here to make for a night at the theatre."
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Tom Williams

Chicago Stage Standard - Highly Recommended

"...Watching losers lose is a chump’s game, even if Reddin means to mock the American obsession to define yourself by what you own. But Campbell’s realistic treatment never lets the mean-spirited overkill and the quirky characterizations seem gratuitous or heavy-handed. But, thanks to Hooper’s solid Franklin (the play’s reality principle) and Rex’s clueless but loyal Effie, this bleak love story comes to a kind of (dismal) life. Audrey Francis has imperious fun as Effie’s dour Rumanian confidante, and Chris Froseth’s odious prosthetic entrepreneur is by-the-numbers nasty. Considering the small house and the fact that Reddin requires cigarettes in almost every scene, it’s quite admirable that the actors mime smoking."

Lawrence Bommer

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