Love London Love Culture rounds up the reviews for Lungs, starring Matt Smith and Claire Foy.
WhatsonStage: **** “Its smartness resides in the fact that it takes a big, unwieldy subject – climate change and its effect on people’s decision-making as they try to consider the future of the planet – and boils it into a domestic situation that everyone can recognise.”
The Telegraph: **** “Duncan Macmillan’s potent, prescient but not wholly persuasive 2011 two-hander about love, reproduction and the future of the planet, Matthew Warchus has cast – what a coup – acting royalty, literally.”
The Guardian: **** “The couple’s principles are put to one side when life takes over. Yet the message of this play is not a cynical one. It is simple a picture of flawed love, set in a flawed planet.”
The Arts Desk: *** “There’s a level of skill and intelligence to its fraught, circuitous exchanges that hints at the dazzling writer Macmillan has become. Despite fine performances from its two stars in a neat, deft production by Matthew Warchus, however, it’s a bland, self-regarding affair that feels decidedly longer than its 80-minute duration.”
London Theatre1: ***** “Refreshingly honest, this raw, fascinating and convincing production is 83 minutes of theatrical excellence of the highest order.”
The Stage: **** “Even if Macmillan’s play gets a bit irritating in its iterations of liberal, middle-class hand-wringing, there are many, many killer lines and, in its entirety, Lungs is a thrilling meeting of head and heart.”
Culture Whisper: **** “Matt Smith gives a nuanced performance as the sarky but well-intentioned boyfriend, but for much of the 1 hour and 20 minute play he is eclipsed by Foy’s intensity.”
Time Out: **** “Warchus’s revival is broader and more sitcommy than previous, more experimental productions of the play. The humour, in particular, succumbs to a few more cliches, leans a little too much on hoary truisms about the differences between men and women. But it also has more emotional weight.”
London Box Office: *** “Claire Foy gives a bravado performance blasting through everything required of her without pausing for a second. Matt Smith is equally good as the quite, understanding and supportive Man.”
Exeunt Magazine: “One of the biggest things that makes the play and production better than perhaps they should be is the performances. It’s fascinating watching the same pair of actors play a different set of characters, but Lungs isn’t just an extended fan-fest for fans of The Crown.”
Evening Standard: **** “Foy, though, is required to be volatile, irrational, resplendent, scathingly witty and broken, and she accomplishes it all.”
The Upcoming: **** “Lungs is the hottest ticket in town, and theatregoers will not be disappointed by the exceptional performances of Foy and Smith, but it is also a well-written and engaging play that has a great deal to say about the times in which we live.”
London Theatre.co.uk: **** “Smith feels like a supporting player to Foy’s performance. She drives Matthew Warchus’ sharp, snappy production with brilliant timing, the entire time teetering on the edge of belly-laugh comedy and heart-wrenching tragedy.”
Lungs continues to play at the Old Vic until the 9th November.