Profiles Theatre’s “Hellcab” Review – Chicago’s Answer to “It’s a Wonderful Life”


We like theater real in the city of big shoulders, even if it gets a bit gritty.   That’s one reason among many why you should queue up to see “Hellcab” by Profiles Theatre before the run ends on January 12. 


With 100% true tales, most of which were experienced directly by playwright Will Kern in his life as a Chicago taxicab driver, we get to see the holidays through the eyes of an overworked cabby exposed to slices of humanity in all shapes, sizes and styles. 



His cab is the living room where it all hangs out.


It’s Christmas time, and instead of “..A Wonderful Life” we go along for a ride rich in that underside where humanity disappoints. 


Whether it’s couples arguing or copulating, our cabby gets a whole lot more than what he bargained for. 


He gets an earful of no love lost between sisters.



Crack heads,



gangbangers real and imagined, and winos come and go from his cab, intermingled with a nymphomaniac attorney or barely repressed closeted homosexual boys who say they are on the hunt for female sex. 





And, don’t forget the guy raving wildly about the importance of mining the moon. 



Misogyny seems to be a common currency—rapes verbal aplenty and physical too.


Our cabby tries to give his good advice when he can, but there seems to be a dearth of takers.



Our poor cabby would much rather be at home in Rockford than prowling the streets for customers and is about to give up hope altogether when he has his moment of finding grace from a passenger.  No, it’s not quite like Jimmy Stewart in “It’s a Wonderful Life”.  . It’s better.  It’s real. It’s about human connection.



How fantastic that this play that began in ’92 at the Famous Door theater is rolled out for many a holiday season.  Better yet, that original cabby star Paul Dillon who first brought this classic to life returns to star this year.


The playwright took a hand at making this a movie.  It’s clearly the vignette stuff of live theater, not cinema. Director Darrell W. Cox has a very talented cast to work with and he’s apparently made the most of it.  Go see it.


Profiles Theatre


Main Stage- 4139 North Broadway, Chicago


Thursdays and Fridays  - 8:30 PM


Saturdays – 5:00 PM and 8:00 PM


Sundays – 7:00 PM


Buy tickets online at the Profile Theatre’s website or call (773) 549 1815.


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Photos:  Michael Brosilow

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