Paul and Lauren have a problem. In fact, they have a lot of problems.
Paul (Carter Hayden) is unemployed and apparently willing to remain so, although just why he’s void of gumption isn’t exactly clear. To keep things together, his over-achieving wife Lauren (Gabrielle Lazarovitz) works three jobs while still finding the time to coddle his bruised ego and pursue a PhD (how anyone could actually juggle all this is another of the play’s unsolved mysteries).
Then the two have an incident. A big one. One so big that their other issues – including having lost their home in a grotty neighbourhood because of missed payments (would a bank really have granted them a mortgage in the first place?) – pale by comparison.
It’s a mess alright.
Written by Lazarovitz and Brad Long and directed by Adam Paolozza, Little Boxes is earnest. Very earnest. With lots of talk about responsibility and decisions and how life was so much better back in the day.
Well-acted and well-intentioned, it’s all a bit tiresome, lacking in dramatic spark and with a script that leaves too many unanswered questions.
A Little Boxes Collective production (Ottawa).
Reviewed Wednesday and Thursday. undercurrents continues until Feb. 17. Information and tickets: undercurrentsfestival.ca