Neil Simon’s hotel room comedy is trapped in an era—a late 1960s middle-class aesthetic—but there is a surprising timelessness underneath the periodisms. Marriages still collapse under the weight of boredom and hostility. Hollywood fantasies remain durable. Year after year, exasperated parents sweat fancy weddings for their daughters. Comprised of three unrelated one-acts (Simon calls them “scenes”), “Visitor from Hollywood” best straddles the dated-but-fresh divide in this Eclipse Theatre production, directed by Steve Scott. The show isn’t as stylish as some of the company’s previous efforts (particularly “Come Blow Your Horn,” also by Simon), but somehow everything clicks when Nathaniel Swift and Frances Wilkerson arrive on stage playing a famous movie producer and the old girlfriend from his pre-celebrity life. Scott has done an interesting bit of colorblind casting—Swift is white, Wilkerson is African-American. The play takes place in 1967; the same year, incidentally, “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” came out. The times were what they were. Scott basically asks you to set that aside, and Wilkerson demands it—deservedly—with a hilarious turn as a star-struck New Jersey housewife in a state of neurotic panic, fending off (but really encouraging) Swift’s mellow come-ons. (Nina Metz)
At the Victory Gardens Greenhouse, 2257 N. Lincoln, (773)871-3000. Thu-Sat 8pm/Sun 3pm. $25. Through Aug 31.