What the Critics Say About The Screwtape Letters

WICKEDLY WITTY ... it is, if I may say so, ONE HELL OF A GOOD SHOW! Lewis’ topsy-turvy exercises in inverted moral theology were made to be played with lip-smacking relish!”

Terry Teachout, The Wall Street Journal

“A HUMOROUS and LIVELY stage adaptation ... THE DEVIL HAS RARELY BEEN GIVEN HIS DUE MORE PERCEPTIVELY AND ERUDITELY ... clever and satirical ... A large part of what makes it successful is the energetic performance by Max McLean as Screwtape."

Wilborn Hampton, The New York Times

VERY SMART ... Richly rewarding ... EXUBERANT THEATRICALITY...McLean let's It rip!”

Chris Jones, Chicago Tribune

ENGROSSING and ENTERTAINING ... largely due to McLean’s SILKY, VIPERISH PERFORMANCE as His Abysmal Sublimity Screwtape ... loaded with alternately clever and ham-handed commentary on human foibles."

The Boston Globe

“A parable dipped in MORDANT IRONY ... CAPTURES THE DROLL HUMOR with which Lewis constructed his topsy-turvy morality lesson. CLEVERLY IMAGINED FOR THE STAGE, it gives even nonbelievers an amusing primer of modern vice."

Michael Schulman, The New Yorker


Celia Wren, The Washington Post

ENTERTAINING AS IT IS THOUGHT-PROVOKING ... McLean delivers a commanding performance!”

Frank Scheck, New York Post

HYSTERICAL AND THOUGHT-PROVOKING ... appealing to believers and nonbelievers equally, perhaps because [Lewis] is able to put himself in the place of each. Screwtape appeals not merely for its intellectually supported Christianity, but for its dark humor.”

Orlando Weekly

DEVILISHLY FUNNY ... Lewis' philosophical insights into human nature are cleverly conveyed!"

Jennifer Farrar, Associated Press

“The production with its IMAGINATIVE set and SNAZZY lighting effects is HIGHLY SEDUCTIVE!

Joe Dziemianowicz , New York Daily News

“Be ye Christian or otherwise, get thee down to the Ohio Theatre today for an introduction to one of the wiliest literary devils ever invented ... Letters have rarely been this SCARY, or ENTERTAINING, or PROFOUNDLY INFORMATIVE!

Cleveland Plain Dealer

The Screwtape Letters is a fast-paced 90 minutes of WITTY, THOUGHT-PROVOKING drama. As funny as it is, it’s all aimed at exposing human sin ... there were occasional deep silences in the audience as a point hit home!"

St. Louis Dispatch

“Incredibly acted (Screwtape is BRILLIANTLY PLAYED BY MAX McLEAN) and tempered with HILARIOUS WIT."

Johanna Cox, Elle Magazine

EXCELS at depicting seduction and corruption…the audience’s 90 minutes is spent — HUMOROUSLY but at times uncomfortably — being wooed by the underworld’s top salesman. Lessons I didn't notice when reading the book jumped out at me during the performance.”

Kristin Hamill, CNN

"The HIGHLIGHT of my trip to New York was to be able to see Max McLean's performance as Screwtape in The Screwtape Letters.  I have wanted to see this production ever since I approved the script ... BREATHTAKING PERFORMANCE ... ENJOYED IT ENORMOUSLY."

Douglas Gresham, C. S. Lewis' stepson & Executor of the Lewis Estate

THE SCREWTAPE LETTERS IS PACKING THEM IN! ... Agreeably demonic, the set, lighting and sound effects are TOP NOTCH, and the actors are ZESTY."

Mark Musto, The Village Voice

WILD CHUCKLES...Lewis doesn't appeal to maudlin emotions or use of guilt ... he's tasteful and thoughtful about religion - A RARITY THESE DAYS! Also tasteful are the handsome set, evocative lights and crisp sound design ... ELEGANT TWIST OF PROSE ... A GENUINE CURIOSITY, unabashed Christian theatre tackling weighty moral issues."

David Cote, Time Out New York & NY1

TRULY CAPTIVATING ... The performances are EXTREMELY STRONG, IMPRESSIVE ... Lewis' pondering on the state of a man's soul is ironic, comedic, and often alarmingly identiable ... YOU WILL LEAVE THE THEATRE WITH SEVERAL INTERESTING DINNER TOPICS. "

Gabrielle Sierra, Broadway World

PLAYFUL, HANDSOME, Wildly Hammified ... Screwtape gets you thinking, and that CAN ONLY BE THE WORK OF THE ANGELS."

Helen Shaw, Time Out New York

SMART, SIZZLING ENTERTAINMENT ... Wonderfully clever ... The intellectual temperature has surely shot up ... SENSATIONAL!

Hedy Weiss, Chicago Sun-Times

PURE GENIUS ... Full of crackling good prose ... McLean DOMINATES the stage ... he is both CHARMING and GRUESOME, which is exactly how theatergoers who are familiar with the book would want him to be.”

John J. Miller, National Review

The Screwtape Letters is just about everything you want in a night at the theatre...THOUGHT-PROVOKING, ENGAGING, ENTERTAINING, INTELLIGENT, BITINGLY SATIRICAL and FUNNY exploration of profound issues of right and wrong.”

Daniel Kelley, NYTheatre.com


Mark Moring, Christianity Today

THIS IS A SHOW ... if you’ll pardon the expression — WITHOUT SIN. Lewis plays the English language like a fine tuned instrument.”

Chris Klimek, DCist.com

FIRST RATE PRODUCTION ... TERRIBLY ENTERTAINING ... Screwtape boils over with wit!”

Jayne Blanchard, The Washington Times

A COMPLETE AND COMPELLING depiction of Lewis’ snarkily astute narrative. This disarming production of perhapsTHE MOST INTERESTING PIECE OF REVERSE-PSYCHOLOGY IN LITERATURE, will provoke the same theological musings among contemporary intellectuals that Lewis intended half a century ago. We must ask ourselves: are cynical pride and dismissive self-delusion really the “gradual path” to Hell? If so, a lot of us are probably ... well ... screwed.”

Mitch Montgomery, OffOffOnline.com


Chris Mincher, The Washington Post Express

FASCINATING AND ENTERTAINING ... and true to themes of the book.”

Henrietta Gomes, The Catholic Herald

GENUINELY FUNNY ... AN ARTISTIC SUCCESS ON ALL LEVELS! – costumes, acting, and set design are PERFECT.”

Tracy Dowling, The Catholic Standard

DEVILISHLY FUNNY ... DELIGHTFUL ... AN INSPIRED COMEDIC VIEW of man's relation to his soul and to major issues in the modern world.”

Barbara Mackay, The Washington Examiner

HELL OF A GOOD TIME ... IMAGINATIVE theatricality ... WONDERFUL performances.”

Frank Scheck, New York Post

“A feast for the soul ... A MUST SEE is McLean's absolute command of the stage ... TOTALLY CAPTIVATING!

Michael J Roberts, Showbiz Chicago

“Passionate and vivid ... EXTREMELY THEATRICAL ... the production matches the cast’s excellence.” 

Julia Furay, CurtainUp.com

“...A GREAT PLAY. The script was TERRIFIC and kept me thinking.”

Marie Knapp, About.com

“A SIZZLING DRAMATIZATION of the C. S. Lewis classic!”

Marvin Olasky, World Magazine