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‘A Bronx Tale’ review: Broadway show wows, despite its ending

"A Bronx Tale" plays at the Longacre Theatre in Manhattan.         Credit: Joan Marcus

We recently saw the Broadway show “A Bronx Tale” at the Longacre Theatre in Manhattan. We did not know what to expect since we had not seen the movie or even heard of the show! However, we can say that not only did the performance and music impress us, but throughout the show we were completely mesmerized with the story, the music and the scenery, and we were kind of upset that it ended.

After all this being said, saying that we would recommend “A Bronx Tale” would be a serious understatement!

The story follows the main character, Calogero, or “C” (played by Bobby Conte Thornton) as they call him throughout the play, and his struggle as he deals with being affiliated with the mob and how that affects his life at home, and also racial inequality as was going on in New York in the 1960s as he has a forbidden love, Jane (Ariana DeBose), an African-American girl who lives on Westchester Avenue. This show portrays someone always being caught between two sides and fitting into the social standards of the time.

The show’s first act follows Calogero as a young child growing up and how he becomes affiliated with Sonny, a mobster who owns a bar on Baltimore Avenue, and his crew. We get to see how his life changes as he and Sonny get closer and how he starts to pull away from his parents as his bond with Sonny gets stronger. Toward the end of the first act, eight years have passed since Calogero and Sonny first met, and Calogero is still in the mob with Sonny and his crew. However, now Calogero has new friends whom he wants to be like. Also, Calogero has a crush on this girl from school, but due to the racial divide he is scared because of what everyone will think. However, after he and Jane get together this leads to epic consequences that will affect Calogero for the rest of his life.

Not only does this play have an amazing story, but “A Bronx Tale” also has a stellar soundtrack and musical numbers throughout the entire show.

While we really did enjoy the play, we were disappointed with the ending. We won’t spoil it because something really big happened, but after this event, the play just ended with Calogero narrating what happened after this crucial moment in the play.

We were incredibly disappointed that they didn’t show the audience what took place after this moment and how it affected Calogero and his life after. We feel that because of that choice to narrate the events that take place afterward, instead of showing us, really made the play have an awkward ending and took us out of the moment. We still loved “A Bronx Tale,” though. Because of the ending we gave it 4.5 smiles out of 5.

We wouldn’t suggest taking younger kids. This play deals with pretty intense topics and has intense scenes and language. So we would suggest that only more mature age groups go, starting from 15 or older.


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