Hawke and Cougar: Gerry Visco Makes A Play for Ethan Hawke
By Gerry Visco
I gave Ethan Hawke a shot at me, but no, the dude just stared vacantly into my eyes. I do think he liked what he saw, since he was smiling. So what if he’s married. After all, look what happened to him and Uma.
The hot hunk of a man, who looked yummy even at close to 40, was seated directly opposite me on a metal folding chair on stage with four actors who were reading from Sam Shepard plays, apt since Hawke’s directing a revival of A Lie of the Mind, opening at the New Group’s Acorn Theater Feb.18.
â€œYou’re all here instead of home watching the Superbowl,â€ Hawke told us with a laugh. â€œI played football in high school.â€ Duh. I didn’t even know the Superbowl was on, but I prefer indoor sports myself. It was good to know the actor, director and novelist had paid his dues by roughhousing on the playing field.
Up on stage with Hawke were Peter Dinklage, Martha Plimpton, Halley Wegryn and Marin Ireland, reading lines of the heart wrenching, quintessentially Shepard material. In case you don’t know his work, he favors fun stuff like family dysfunction, sibling rivalry, violence, and the torrid wars between men and women. â€œIt’s just a dumb movie, but it’s not as dumb as my life,â€ was a line that resonated.
Since the play’s still in previews, I can’t say much other than I was blown away by the cast. Even better than the cute younger guys, including Alessandro Nivola who was running around in boxer shorts two feet from my face, was Keith Carradine. Who knew he’d have such a thrillingly deep voice and masculine presence? At 60, he’s a fox and looks as good as he did in The Long Riders or Nashville. In fact, I was a bit confusedâ€”who should I throw myself at, Hawke or Carradine? Too bad the gloriously scruffy Sam Shepard himself wasn’t around, we could have had a hell of a ballgame.