Venue Details

214 Star Starred
San Francisco Playhouse
Between Powell and Mason Streets. 450 Post Street San Francisco, CA 94102
Venue website Get directions
4.4 / 5 Rated by 44 members
Review from bwkbwk

The entire show takes place in one simple setting, with just 2 actors.

However, the acting is superb, as is the storyline.

I was riveted and interested the entire time (about 1 and a half hours).

The show is all about the characters'...continued

reviewed Sep 30 2010 report as inappropriate
Review from writeguysf

Smart writing, solid acting, a gem in a small theater that takes the viewer right down to the essence of life as we know it. Hope versus hopelessness, violence versus peace, it's all there in a tidy, occasionally uncomfortable but always rewarding...continued

reviewed Sep 30 2010 report as inappropriate
Review from Rodney Anderson

The temperature in the theatre made me doze during parts of the play but I really did enjoy the performances. The ending was a bit too preachy. I enjoy a good conversation/argument but it is hard for me to concentrate when it is too warm in the...continued

reviewed Sep 30 2010 report as inappropriate
View All 33 Reviews
More Information

Quotes & Highlights

Sunset Limited Pulses with Urgency…. Lumbly makes the words sing… English stages the interplay as a tense psychological cat-and-mouse game and brings it to a compelling climax.” —San Francisco Chronicle
“It’s brilliant theater and a breathtaking high-wire act…Director, actors, and playwright collaborate in creating a challenging, compelling, surprisingly suspenseful play.” —San Francisco Examiner
See a video preview of the show.


The theme of the SF Playhouse’s 2010-2011 season is “Why Theatre?” said artistic director Bill English. “Why do we do theatre? How does theatre serve our community? Each of our selections for our eighth season will give a different answer to these questions. Based on the belief that mankind created theatre to serve a spiritual need in our community, our riskiest and most challenging season yet will ask us to face mankind’s deepest mysteries.”

The season opens with one of the most powerful writers of our time, Cormac McCarthy (All the Pretty Horses, The Road, No Country for Old Men). The play, billed as “a novel in play form,” brings audiences into a startling encounter on a New York subway platform which leads two strangers to a run-down tenement where they engage in a brilliant verbal duel on a subject no less compelling than the meaning of life.

TV and film star Carl Lumbly (Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train, Alias, Cagney & Lacey) returns to the SF Playhouse to reunite with local favorite Charles Dean after having performed together in Berkeley Rep’s 1997 production of Macbeth.


Cormac McCarthy’s first novel, The Orchard Keeper (1965), won a Faulkner Award, and subsequent grants and fellowships allowed him to continue writing novels while he lived in Tennessee and Texas. Although his subsequent novels Outer Dark (1968), Child of God (1973) and Suttree (1979) solidified his literary reputation, he was relatively unknown until 1985’s Blood Meridian, a violent epic about the American West. During the ’90s McCarthy, hailed as a prose stylist in the tradition of Hemingway and Faulkner, became famous for his literary Westerns called The Border Trilogy: All the Pretty Horses (1992), The Crossing (1994) and Cities on the Plain (1998). His other novels include No Country for Old Men (2005) and The Road (2006), both of which have been made into films.

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