Byline: Eileen Daspin
If you think the plot of Craig Lucas’s “Prelude to a Kiss” seemed drafted from a bad dream — a bride unwittingly swaps souls with an old man on her wedding day — just wait until his new movie, “Reckless,” is released.
“It’s the only work of mine that was written entirely from the unconscious,” says Lucas, who starts shooting the film in Connecticut this month. The story opens with Rachel (Mia Farrow), a housewife, declaring to her husband on Christmas morning that she is so happy she’s having a “euphoria attack.” The husband (Griffin Dunne) announces he’s hired a hit man to kill her, and Rachel embarks on the weirdest journey since Bill and Ted set off to Mongolia to meet Genghis Khan. “The whole thing takes place in one of those little shake-up things filled with snow,” says Lucas, who sends his heroine onto an Oedipal game show, “Your Mother or Your Wife,” through the birth canal, and into the arms of a physical therapist and his deaf paraplegic wife (Mary-Louise Parker). “We’re going to shoot the entire thing in a studio to create that kind of dream world.”
(Lucas and the film’s producers also wanted to snag Mia Farrow, who lives in Connecticut and would sign on only if the movie was shot near her house.)
But until shooting starts, Lucas’s schedule will have been more like a writer’s nightmare than a dream. He rewrote his 1987 musical play, “Three Postcards,” which opened for previews at the Circle Repertory Company last week, is working on revivals of two other shows at the Atlantic Theater and is writing a new play, “God’s Heart,” that will open at Lincoln Center early next year.
“Last night, I dreamed I was being welcomed to Lincoln Center by Wendy Wasserstein and the whole Lincoln Center crowd. I think it was a dream about family,” he interprets.
If dreams come true, the one critic who won’t be allowed in Lincoln Center on opening night will be New York magazine’s John Simon, who has been critical of some of Lucas’s work.
“When I was watching the Democratic National Convention and they were chanting, ‘It’s time for him to go,’ I kept thinking of John Simon,” says Lucas. “It’s time for him to go. Have you ever seen him before dark? Think about that.”
Responds Simon, “Craig Lucas has been criticized by me for his inferior play writing and that’s all…Nothing makes me happier than that Craig Lucas is thinking about me at any time.”