On Broadway: Hippie Daddy

Peter Ustinov often gives the impression that he can write a play with one hand tied behind his back. Unfortunately, half of Halfway Up the Tree seems to have been written with the tethered hand. Never so bad as to make its intermissions seem like blessed reprieves, Tree is never so good as to make its acts seem like comic rewards.

Ustinov has chosen to view hippiedom as the social dawn of a New Jerusalem. A very pukka Sahib general (played with quaint and artful foxiness by Anthony Quayle) comes home from liquidating the...

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