The Iceman Cometh

The Iceman Cometh

Book - 1999
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"Spellbinding--soaring theater--. For reasons that remain mysterious, it seems especially moving today."-- The New York Times

Eugene O'Neill mined the tragedies of his own life for this depiction of a seedy, skid row saloon in 1912, peopled by society's failures: worn-out anarchists, failed con artists, drifters, whores, pimps, and informers. The pipe-dreaming drunks of Harry Hope's bar numb themselves with rotgut gin and make grandiose plans, while waiting for the annual appearance of the big-spending, fast-talking salesman, Hickey. But this year's visit fails to bring the expected good times, as a changed Hickey tries to rouse the barflies from their soothing stupor with a proselytizing message of salvation through self-knowledge.
                              
Considered by many to be the Nobel Prize-winning playwright's finest work, The Iceman Cometh exposes the human need for illusion as an antidote to despair. The recent gripping, critically acclaimed Broadway production, starring Kevin Spacey, has highlighted anew the subversive genius of O'Neill's play.
Publisher: New York : Vintage International, 1999.
Edition: 1st Vintage International ed.
ISBN: 9780375709173
0375709177
Branch Call Number: 812 O'NEILL
Characteristics: xii, 196 p. ; 21 cm.

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FVReader
Sep 02, 2013

Wow....talk about despair! It's in every movement of this play.
Harry's bar & rooming house is the last stop for a rag-tag group of alcoholics. There's nowhere for them to go; they've reached rock bottom. As we hear of each of their pasts, it's so sad to know that their lives once held promise and it slipped away.
Along comes Hickey who tries to show them that they can break out of their pattern, return to their old lives. He tries to give them hope. But, even as they try, it's hopeless. How can one man make another man, who is wasted and has given in & surrendered to life, see opportunity?
This would be a good play to see on stage with the action and drama. It's a good play to read as well.

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