Theater: Rococo Rotter

Man and Boy, by Terence Rattigan. Last season Charles Boyer starred in Lord Pengo, a tracing-paper-thin characterization of Art Wheeler-Dealer Jo seph Duveen. Boyer was slyly fascinating; the play provoked yawns. In Man and Boy, Boyer plays Gregor Antonescu, a blurry blotting-pad version of the 20th century's master swindler, Ivar Kreuger. Boyer makes a charming cad; the play is a jaw-aching bore. If the evening proves anything, it is merely that actors who are graded 100 for talent sometimes get zero for judgment.

Playwright Rattigan's judgment ranks little higher. In a crucial scene,...

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