Off Broadway Reviews
Place a little extra emphasis on the smash. The title of Fuerzabruta, which originated in Argentina and is from the same team that presented the long-running, airborne hit De La Guarda at the same theater several years ago, means "brute force" in Spanish, and that's exactly what you get into this alternately exhilarating and exhausting 70-minute performance. Men smashing through walls, women rappelling down glaciers, and end-of-the-millennium partiers stomping hard enough to bring down the ceiling above their heads are only the beginning.
They're also more or less the end. While there's an undeniable fascination in watching the exacting choreography of the treadmills, bandstands, and high-flying swimming pools that provide Fuerzabruta with the most exciting of its choreography, there's little sense that any of this spectacle serves a greater purpose. The sole thread linking the show's many disparate segments, the resilience of the human spirit in the face of outright catastrophe, is so light that it's all but blown away by the wind machines that blast several thousand pieces of tissue-paper confetti through the audience at key points.
Ultimately, though, that matters little. The percussive pacing of Diqui James's production and the chest-pounding bass of Gaby Kerpel's original music are persuasive enough to sweep you along on their own terms. They even have some floor-level help from audience wranglers, who herd you about the stage ensuring you won't be flattened by a rolling scaffold or smothered by a curtain flapping down from the flies.)
At least you're joined by one elemental force: water. Not long after they finish splashing in it, you'll be drenched by an indoor rainstorm thematically intended, one suspects, to wash away the past so you can begin life (and the night) anew. After all the exercise you'll get avoiding oncoming scenery and being pelted by flying plaster, you'll appreciate the shower. It is, after all, a cool note to conclude a show that spends most of its time being hot, and if this show does nothing else, it raises your temperature. If you want entertainment, too, Fuerzabruta also delivers a nice, controlled blast.