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LA Theater Review

Elevator

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One might expect seven strangers trapped in an elevator for nine hours to begin their ordeal with an attempt at reserved civility and end it tearing out each other's throats. Not playwright-director Michael Leoni. In the muddled logic of his implausible claustrophobia comedy, the close confines become a de facto confessional, as his initially icy, urban archetypes quickly melt and begin spouting deeply personal truths that would take the average neurotic years to work up to in psychotherapy. Pedestrian dialogue, non sequitur psychology and a slack staging defeat a valiant ensemble in an interminable 90 minutes; the Marx Brothers did it much funnier in less than three.

Hudson Guild, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood; Fri., 10:30 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 3 p.m.; thru June 27. (866) 811-4111.

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