(Ben Brantley’s article appeared in The New York Times, 5/1.)
It really is a jungle out there, Blanche, that same cruel, do-or-die world described by Darwin. And while it’s noble of you to plead with your sister not to “hang back with the brutes” — to choose the aesthetes over the animals — you surely know it’s a waste of breath.
The New Orleans neighborhood where Blanche DuBois comes calling so disastrously in Tennessee Williams’s “A Streetcar Named Desire” has never seemed quite as atavistic as it does in Benedict Andrews’s compellingly harsh revival, which opened on Sunday night at St. Ann’s Warehouse in Brooklyn. This production pits a fully adrenalized Gillian Anderson, as Blanche, against Ben Foster, as her adversarial brother-in-law, Stanley Kowalski, in a riveting study of the survival of the fittest.