Torn between art and making a living, having accepted the biggest commission of his life for a huge upscale hotel chain, Red portrays an imaginary, witty dialogue between the artist, Max Rothko (Alfred Molina), and his apprentice (Alfred Enoch), a fellow would-be artist ready to tear the establishment apart, to create his own groundbreaking artwork.
In real life people, even geniuses do not express themselves in John Logan’s polished banter but somehow Molina and Enoch not only make it credible, they make it real.
We arrive at the theatre and take our seat while Mr. Molina is on stage, sat on an armchair, already staring with puzzlement at his huge, fake Rothko canvases, surrounding him, tilted against the sides of his studio, Rothko’s studio. He is staring at his masterpieces, lost in its shades of red and its symbolism. Red can be life, blood, passion. Red can be engulfed by its opposite, black, by darkness. From then on, it is an exhilarating ride.
Red, Wyndham Theatre London, 20 June 2018