Review: ‘A Case for the Existence of God’ Finds What Connects Us All and Holiness in Humanity

Thinking about how sedentary my own life was, I watched two guys sit for a long time in A Case for the Existence of God.

I sit idly for long stretches of the day at my desk or couch, but I’m not even sure what I’m doing with that time.

Review: ‘A Case for the Existence of God’ Finds What Connects Us All and Holiness in Humanity

What’s the point of working and watching TV if you’re just going to die anyway? In a sense, that became gloomy.

So, too, does Samuel D. Hunter’s 90-minute two-hander, which, with great delicacy and ambition, follows the entwining of two strangers’ souls.

The men’s sat attitude takes on an existential gloom after a while, representing apathy, immobility, and melancholy.

It’s like a lightning bolt tearing through the auditorium when one of them stands up in anger.

Prisoners in their own cubicle, Ryan (Will Brill) and Keith (Kyle Beltran) work together at a mortgage brokerage firm in Twin Falls, Idaho.

Arnulfo Maldonado’s corporate-island-in-a-desert set is easily transformed into other locations with just a few rearranged ferns and staplers.

While Tyler Micoleau’s expert lighting design gets a workout in defining both time and place. Both Ryan and Keith were picking up their kids from daycare at the same time, and that’s how they met.

This is a Play by Samuel D. Hunter

Playwright Samuel D. Hunter’s work is being staged here under the direction of David Cromer.

At least a decade’s worth of their individual theatrical performances have provided me with some of the most wonderful experiences I’ve ever had in New York City.

The result is “A Case for the Existence of God,” their second attempt at a joint work. The term “sublime” is not intended to imply any sort of religious significance.

In “A Case for the Existence of God,” the only time either of the two main protagonists uses the word “God” is in the statement “Oh my God” (which, come to think of it.

The two characters exclaim with some frequency – perhaps an example of the crafty symbolic touches with which Hunter typically riddles his scripts.)

Instead, the play’s title, and its message, is that even in the worst of times, one must never give up hope. The ability to form bonds with others—both living and dead—is what gives us faith in the future.

Conclusion

The new play by Samuel D. Hunter is called “A Case for the Existence of God,” which may put off potential audience members who aren’t interested in a heated theological discussion.

(Which is to say, most of them, er, us.) Mr. Hunter, however, is not an ideologue, despite being one of the best living playwrights.

His focus is on individual people, preferably average ones, and the difficulties they face in everyday life.

Mr. Hunter’s plays stand out for their casual charm and the genuine care he clearly has for his characters.

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