photo: Joan Marcus
As the title character, a staunch "naturalist" who has long held firm that religion is ignorant superstition that is largely to blame for the world's horrors, Lynn Redgrave is riveting, electrifying. She gives Grace both crusty arrogance and near-consuming passion . As the sometimes provocative one-act drama unfolds, out of chronological order but always with clarity, we see Grace's belief system shaken to the core when her son (Oscar Isaac) decides to become an Episcopal minister. Their dynamic, lucid arguments are the meat of the play, each unwavering (until tragedy intervenes) at what seems to be an impossible emotionally charged impasse. Engrossing as the arguments are, and effective and memorable the performances, the dialogue often makes the two sound like walking mouthpieces rather than characters engaged in real-life debate. But if you can look past that, as I did, Grace is thoughtful and absorbing and scores high on the Talk About It After Over Drinks punchcard.