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Offices

Offices
Your Price: $12.95 CDN
Author: Ethan Coen
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 60
Pub. Date: 2010
ISBN-10: 0822224216
ISBN-13: 9780822224211

About the Play:

Three satiric plays by Oscar-winning screenwriter Ethan Coen.

The volume Offices contains a series of three comedic one-act plays by Ethan Coen about white-collar workers. Hiring and firing are antisocial acts. Workplace pressures make for nasty competition. And the work itself can be meaningless and alienating. Accordingly, the three short plays that make up Offices are comedies. Offices includes Peer Review, Homeland Security, and Struggle Session. Clever, provocative, and as engaging as the best fiction, these plays showcase yet another talent of one of the most celebrated contemporary writers.

In Peer Review, a youngish worker continually and whiningly declares his disillusionment with the insidious, brainwashing effects of corporate culture. "If one had to pick a Coen movie to compare it to, the closest might be Fargo, with its awkward cultivation of gnawing frustration and indignation paired with hapless timidity." — The Guardian (Cast: 1 woman, 4 men)

In Homeland Security, a department head at the titular agency finds the nebulous risks to the nation's welfare easier to deal with than the everyday domestic ructions of his home life. "It's hard not to think of Burn After Reading while watching Homeland Security, with its CIA-set scenes of pompous inanity and suspicion of the internet." — The Guardian (Cast: 2 women, 6 men)

The Struggle Session is an exercise in bull-in-a-china-shop misadventure sparked when a middle-manager, fired, rehired and promoted in an afternoon, celebrates by recruiting the homeless man to whom he was recounting his woes at the time of his reversal of fortune. "The use of a disruptive outsider who is not so much inadequate as indifferent to the task that is his charge recalls The Big Lebowski, as does a strong thread of hippy-related gags." — The Guardian (Cast: 7 men)

Offices was first performed Off-Broadway in 2009 at the Atlantic Theater Company's Linda Gross Theater in New York and ran to sold-out audiences.

What people say:

"Three one-act plays that offer a brisk, brutal assessment of the contemporary workplace…The numbing boredom, thankless bureaucracy, inane corporate-speak, underhand competition and sneaky power plays of office life are channeled into some funny, horrifyingly recognizable vignettes, peopled by characters with whom we've all worked. Coen draws mordant humor from the winner-loser divide and the self-loathing of the company man, with a quiet hint of melancholy in the artificial intimacy of office relationships." — Variety

About the Author:

Ethan Coen is an American screenwriter and producer who has also written plays, poetry, and short stories. Working alongside his brother Joel, he is widely considered one of the most visionary and idiosyncratic filmmakers of the late 20th Century.

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