Lola, a modern, independent woman, arrives home after having had a bit too much to drink, carried on the back of none other than a monk, in playwright Antoine Beauville’s “La Logique des Femmes.” Throughout the three scenes that follow, we learn that she can be strong and feminist in one moment and strong and feminine the next. It is the fact that she is both that is endearing.
The play could just as well have been titled “La Logique des Hommes,” since the comic barbs traded back and forth between Lola and the monk reveal as much about masculine logic as they do about the feminine. The poor monk hadn’t quite realized what he was getting into when, playing the good samaritan, he decided to help the inebriated Lola get home. What follows is sculpted hilarity at its finest.
In the role of Lola, actress Virginie Stevenoot takes us on an intoxicating ride, forwarding quickly to liberated power woman and, finally, to woman in love (but not with the monk).
It’s been said that playing a drunken character is perhaps the biggest challenge for an actor. Stevenoot not only pulls it off but manages to sustain it for an entire scene. Her ability to lead us believably through this range of character and emotion shows real skill.
Dominique-Pierre Devers is equally accomplished as the lovable, good-hearted monk who secretly wishes he could partake of the sins of the non-clergy. These conflicting motivations become clear and comical in his conversations with God, who – adding to the monk’s confusion about feminine logic – is female, an off-stage voice played by Chantal Ladesou.
Carole Barbier has directed the play at a fast-paced clip, taking advantage of every moment to provoke a laugh. The stage and costume design serve the play well – the costumes alone say much about Lola’s character – and the “morning-after” hair is spot on.
A veteran playwright, performer and director, Beauville has delivered a comedy that is slightly absurd and improbable, but completely human at heart, allowing us to fundamentally like the two characters regardless of their offbeat behavior, the source of the laughs.