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Closer Hardcover – 1999


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 123 pages
  • Publisher: Grove Press (1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0739405314
  • ISBN-13: 978-0739405314
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,444,335 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Love and sex are like politics: it's not what you say that matters, still less what you mean, but what you do. Patrick Marber understands this perfectly, and in Closer he has written one of the best plays of sexual politics in the language: it is right up there with Williams' Streetcar, Mamet's Oleanna, Albee's Virginia Woolf, Pinter's Old Times and Hare's Skylight."—The Sunday Times

"Patrick Marber's searing follow-up to Dealer's Choice establishes him as the leading playwright of his generation."— Independent on Sunday
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Patrick Marber was born in London. His first play, Dealer's Choice, (1995) won the Evening Standard Award for Best Comedy and the Writer's Guild Award for Best West End Play. Closer premiered at the Royal National Theatre in 1997 and on Broadway in 1999. Patrick Marber has also written extensively for television and radio including After Miss Julie.
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Having read Closer I understand the movie a lot better.
N. Bellato
It is undeniable that what moves Marber's characters is the sexual attraction, rather than love itself.
A. T. A. Oliveira
Great play for acting students looking to delve into some touchy material.
Andrew Walker

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By A. T. A. Oliveira on November 30, 2003
Format: Paperback
Strange things are the human beings. Come to think of them. We are never happy with what we have-- we always want more, and we always have a hard time trying to fulfill our egotistical desire. This wish is what moves the characters in Patrick Marber's play `Closer'.
A group of four characters get together and falls a part. It begins when the stripper Alice meets the journalist Dan. Months later they are married, he has written a book, and he meets the photographer Anna, who's taking his pictures to the book jacket. Dan grows obsessed with Anna. In an Internet chat room, while pretends to be Anna, Dan meets and have `sex' with the dermatologist Larry. They arrange to meet in the Zoo on the following day. Larry goes there and by coincidence the real Anna is there. They end up getting together and married. This is when these four persons relationships are about to get more complicated.
It is undeniable that what moves Marber's characters is the sexual attraction, rather than love itself. People desire each other, more than love --albeit they can say they are in love. Dan seems to be the kind of man who wants to be with as much women as possible, while Larry appears to be in love, at first. But this feeling total disappears and becomes a feeling of revenge --sexual speaking. He wants to hurt both Anna and Dan. On the other hand, Alice has a blasé behavior at first, which ends up being an obsessive sexual relationship as the time goes. Moreover, Alice develops a sick patter through the years. Anna, while seems to be a strong and independent woman at first, turns out to be fragile until when she is hurt very hard, and has to be strong again.
The dramatist manages to give a sad and honest look in love and desire in our times.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By N. Bellato on October 3, 2005
Format: Paperback
After falling in love with the movie, and purchasing the movie script - which contains a lot more scenes from the play that were shot and then deleted from the movie during editing, I figured reading the book would be the best way to connect all dots, as the movie's timeline can lead to confusion. Love the book too. I know many people find the whole topic and dialogue obscene, vulgar, boring, depressing and irrelevant, but I really enjoy it, and find the dialogue clever, refreshing, realistic. Having read Closer I understand the movie a lot better. Either way, this is fantastic.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tom Benton on June 17, 2007
Format: Paperback
There is a wonderful line in Patrick Marber's "Closer," one of a great many, in which one character asks, "Have you ever seen a human heart? It looks like a fist wrapped in blood!" That line perfectly sums up Marber's play, which has become something of a contemporary classic since it hit stages in 1997. "Closer" is a cynic's love story, the tale of four strangers whose lives interweave as they fall in and out of love with each other over the course of years. There's Dan, the obituarist who dreams of becoming a writer; Anna, the photographer who tries not to dream; Alice, the stripper who just wants to be loved; and Larry, the dermatologist who watches it all with a devious eye.

"Closer" was made into a woefully misunderstood and truthfully stellar film by director Mike Nichols, with perfect casting (Jude Law as Dan, Julia Roberts as Anna, Natalie Portman as Alice, Clive Owen as Larry), but Marber's play is still better. It's everything a play should be: observant, amusing, realistic, and above all else, thoughtful. Most animals don't stay with one partner through their entire life, and what are humans but animals? Can we ever truly find our "soulmates," or are we meant to just drift in and out of love throughout our lives? If Marber knows, he doesn't show it. "Closer" is one great, big, hard-hitting question, spoken by Alice: "Why isn't love enough?"

I must admit, I'm not much of a fan of the stage. Previously, only the work of Tennessee Williams had really impressed me. But Patrick Marber's "Closer" is playwriting perfection. It's impeccably structured and loaded with no-holds-barred, simply brilliant dialogue. Regardless of your opinions of theatre, or even if you've never read a play before, I would highly recommend "Closer."
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By "kenyie" on August 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
Patrick Marber's comic drama CLOSER is a brilliant examination of what it means to be human in an increasingly technological society. Marber is interested in a world where humans interact through machines, rather than true and intimate connection. His exploration of four British thirtysomethings--Anna, Larry, Alice and Dan--has been compared to another classic four person play, Albee's WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF. While chronicling the psychosexual lives of his characters, Marber's CLOSER makes a bold cultural statement: a definitive play about a definitive era. Reminding readers and audience members of the difficulties of becoming "closer," Marber viscerally suggests that human connection could be impossible for members of our millenium. Hugely popular in the UK, it is one of the most thoughtful plays of the century. As a work that shocks and disturbs while it amuses, CLOSER has become indelibly imprinted in our theatrical and personal histories.
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