This new play by Dan LeFranc, which began life as a forty-minute one-act, runs like a time-lapse portrait of a multi-generational family over the course of a good half century or so. To put it another way, imagine the prologue from Pixar’s “Up,” the sweet couple seen at every high and low of their life together, but also imagine they had children, and their children had children, and so on. LeFranc packs an amazing number of scenes into the play’s seventy-five-minute runtime, and while this attempt to etch a grand narrative of the modern American family often feels cloyingly typical, and even exhaustive in its breadth, its depths are painfully and humorously familiar. An agile cast of four boy/girl pairs, at four stages of life, breathes life into Sam and Nicole, their parents and children and lovers, showcased well in Dexter Bullard’s effective, minimalist staging. (Neal Ryan Shaw)
American Theater Company, 1909 West Byron, (773)409-4125. Through March 6.