Polish playwright Slawomir Mrozek’s “The Emigrants” looks at two Polish emigrants in impoverished exile in 1980s Paris. Their world is divided into that which costs and that which is free. As they soon discover, everything costs.
Intellectual AA (Joe Mack) is a political refugee who immerses himself in the mind games and doublespeak he inflicts on XX (Goran Milev), his practical workhorse of a roommate who’s abroad to save up cash for his dream home. The two bait each other until AA threatens to make it impossible for XX to ever return home. The fallout from his threat changes their lives.
Mack is up to the character’s wordplay but needs to internalize his emotions; Milev captures his character’s intent but his diction suffers in the heat of the moment. These are quibbles; the two still manage to capture the paralysis of poverty and the yearning for what they can’t have. (Lisa Buscani)
Moving Stories Theatre‘s “The Emigrants” plays at The Artistic Home Theatre, 3914 N. Clark Street, (312)213-6236. Through February 21.