Jack Ruby was a streetwise confident tough guy, knew his way, in the world of nightclubs and burlesque. He was a patriot, loved America, loved the buzz of it, the embrace of it. He was a charmer, could have been, should have been a politician, he would engage you with his smile, you would find him interesting and affable, but you would know, because he ran nightclubs, not to mess with him.
Clifford Barry brings him to life. He starts tough, friendly, confident. And he crumbles before our eyes. We meet him in Dallas County Jail, arrested for the shooting of Harvey Oswald. He is lost, losing it, his tough guy streetwise veneer is fragile, begins to peel. He does not understand the enormity of his crime, he becomes deferential, his voice now more plaintiff, his charm and smile cracking into despair.
He protests at being labelled a mobster, about the alleged links to organised crime, He’s just a guy, an American, a patriot. The pressure is wrecking his thought process he is becoming manifestly ill and he falls further and further apart.
This is a tour de force by Barry. He tells the story to his prison guard Mr. Stevenson. You are convinced Mr. Stevenson is standing right behind you; you are witnessing the conversation, part of the conversation, utterly locked into the performance.
You want to write? You want to Act? This is a master class.
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