David Mamet’s China Doll involves two dramas. There’s the one on stage starring Al Pacino as an old billionaire in something of a cynical primer on wealth and political ambition. Then there’s the pile-on against the show: The reviews have been the worst anything on Broadway has gotten this whole year. That includes Misery and It Shoulda Been You. With only a few exceptions, the reviewers have sounded hostile, one calling the play “garbage.”….I am more willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, and not completely trash China Doll because it’s difficult to decipher. And Mamet’s new play does make Broadway theatergoers work harder than they are accustomed to doing.
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