The Judas Kiss: ★★★★★ from The Sunday Express
Posted on 5 October 2012.
Posted in: Theatre Reviews
Judas Kiss Review
By Mark Shenton, Sunday Express
The good news first: the revivals of David Hare’s The Judas Kiss and Chekhov’s Three Sisters are among the best productions I’ve seen all year both, coincidentally, directed by Australians. Hare’s play is bitterly brilliant as it anatomises the unequal relationship of Oscar Wilde and Lord Alfred Douglas that led to Wilde’s downfall.
The original 1998 production starred a weirdly miscast Liam Neeson and Tom Hollander that fatally undermined the play’s tragic grandeur. Now, however, in an operatically charged new production by Neil Armfield, it has much more credibility, with Rupert Everett bringing a crumpled, pained vulnerability to Wilde. He is ideally partnered onstage by Freddie Fox’s portrait of his young lover Bosie as a petulant, selfish monster. The play is explicit (there’s a lot of generous nudity, in every sense) but also pulses with heartbreaking emotion.