This Is Our Youth: Review

It was a Saturday morning and I knew I wanted to see a broadway show that evening. I've never actually seen a broadway show before. I've seen tours, off-broadway shows, community theatre productions, and all of that. But I've never actually been to a legit NYC broadway show. Quite honestly, I expected myself to see a classic musical or something. But there were three plays out I've been actually really wanting to see, and This Is Our Youth automatically caught my eye, as it has been for weeks.

It seemed different. A three person cast. A cast of three people that seemed to had been somewhat thought out, but also experimental at the same time. Nowadays, broadway seems to cast famous people that have no on-stage experience, or famous people that have a fan base and will draw people in. While Michael, Kiernan and Tavi all have acting experience, and I was interested in seeing them perform,  you could tell they weren't casted for the wrong reason.

I've never read This Is Our Youth before. I've never seen it before. I didn't go in with any expectations, so I had a pretty open mind. And let me tell you: I loved it.

Normally while watching a performance, I'm critiquing it. I'm ripping it apart piece by piece, analyzing everything from the actors to the costumes to the set. It's just something that's always been natural for me to do, yet, during the entire performance of TIOY, I didn't really want to. I was intrigued in what was going to happen and I was laughing every few minutes. Literally LOLing, which is quite rare.

I felt like every plot summary I read was nothing like what I actually saw. The thing about this play is that it's simple and doesn't need a five paragraph description. I'm not going to give you an entire plot summary, but it takes place in a small NY apartment in the 1980s on the Upper West Side. It's spans over about a day. (All night, then the following morning) It's basically about these two guys named Warren (Michael Cera) and Dennis (Kiernan Culkin) and all the crazy shit within one night. That's all I'm going to tell you because if I say anything else, it takes the fun out of seeing it.

The performances were really well and blended together. The actors all seemed compatible and bounced off of each other amazingly. At the beginning, Michael Cera seemed a bit pushy with his acting but after a while, I realized all of his acting choices were justified and his performance was hilarious. The way his lines are worded and the way he delivered them never failed to make me laugh.

Kiernan Culkin blew my mind. I mean, I felt like I was with him in the room. He took me back to the eighties. The way he effortlessly did everything and really made a connection with the actors, the audience, and the fake people he was talking to on the phone literally made my jaw drop. Because of him, I never laughed so hard at a show. I can't think of anyone who could've done this role better. From him pushing his hair out of his face, to his weed smoking, and to him getting angry at everything - his performance was...amazing.

Now, I've always respected Tavi Gevinson as a person. I love her work in terms of Rookie magazine, and truly love her individuality. When I found out she was going to be on broadway, I was genuinely intrigued! I didn't know what to expect. Now, I don't know if her character Jessica was supposed to be a manic pixie dream girl with an edge or the awkward girl she portrayed, but whatever she did was good. I like the unique twist she added to the character. Her and Michael Cera were very compatible on stage and I enjoyed watching her.

The set...oh, the set. The set was the best set I've ever seen in my life. Everyone around me was freaking out about it. It looked too realistic, too REAL. The lighting portrayed night and day almost better than the sun! There was an apartment building shown behind everything that I was questioning how it was even possible they did such a thing. Kudos to everyone that took part in that. Well done.

I liked how This Is Our Youth was simplistic yet modern. Light yet heavy. Shallow yet deep. Hilarious yet thought-provoking. It's a play that is open to interpretation and you can either love it or hate it, but it's worth seeing.

I met the cast after the show, and they were all super nice. Michael Cera and me had eye contact for 5 seconds straight, Kiernan and I joked about 'drugs' being on stage, and Tavi was super cute and almost shy. Not to mention, Rashida Jones (from NBC's The Office and Parks and Rec, etc) was sitting a few rows in front of me. I'm a HUGE NBC fan, so I got to meet her briefly. Gosh, meeting celebrities is hard sometimes cause I want to ask them deep questions and just have a conversation with them but instead, it's "Hey, huge fan. Bye." Regardless, it was nice meeting everyone.

The show officially opens on September 11 and runs for 18 weeks. Go see it while you can. You can get tickets via telecharge.com or the box office.


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