Auberjonois Garners Good Reviews For 'Sly Fox'

By Michelle
April 13, 2004 - 10:33 PM

Though the production of Sly Fox currently playing at the Barrymore Theatre on Broadway opened to mixed reviews, critics have been near-unanimous in praising the performance of Rene Auberjonois (Odo) as Jethro Crouch, an elderly, demented gold-digger.

The New York Times' Ben Brantley called the production a "sputtering revival" and said that the big-name cast led by Richard Dreyfuss comes to full comic life only occasionally, despite being directed by Arthur Penn, who staged the original Broadway version which also starred Auberjonois.

"The performances need to be drawn with...gargoylish strokes," Brantley wrote, but found that primarily the supporting cast members rose to the challenge, particularly Bob Dishy, also recreating a role from the original production, as well as Auberjonois and Bronson Pinchot.

The New Yorker credited Dreyfuss with a strong performance but was unimpressed with Eric Stoltz as a villain, calling him "a good actor who has wandered into the wrong play...he hasnít a whiff of mischief about him."

This sentiment was echoed by many other reviewers, including The Associated Press, which called the production "more frenzied than funny, with a spirited supporting cast trying its best to inject some life into the frantic proceedings" and noted that "Auberjonois creaks in hilarious decrepitude."

The Hollywood Reporter complained that Stoltz played the material "far too straight" but said the rest of the performers occasionally offered "successful shtick, such as Auberjonois' funny walk."

USA Today also said that Auberjonois provided "winning drollness" while The Philadelphia Enquirer blamed the updated script by Larry Gelbart for characters which seemed repetitive.

Details on tickets and scheduling for the revival of Sly Fox are available at Playbill. No closing date has been announced.

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