John Cullum, Jonathan Hogan, and Ron Holgate give exceptional performances in this warm and funny comedy about three war veterans.
The three elderly men on a terrace of a French home for war veterans in 1959 probably wouldn't be friends outside of this institution, but they have found kinship together despite their considerable differences. There's blustering aristocrat Gustave (Holgate), who performed remarkable acts of courage during World War I; Philippe (Hogan), a mild-mannered man who has shrapnel in his head and will black out without warning; and Henri (Cullum), who lost a leg in the Great War but who remains the most practical and reasonable of these three emotionally starved men.
The comedy in this 90-minute, intermissionless play comes largely out of the awkward but very real ways these men deal with their problems. For instance, Philippe doesn't read the letters he gets from his sister. Instead, in a nutty act of generosity, he gives the letters to Gustave, who, having no one in his life, pretends to be Philippe when he writes back -- eventually estranging Phillipe from his entire family.
There is also an ongoing bit about the stone statue of a dog that sits on the terrace. Philippe periodically believes that he sees it moving. Gustave considers them to be a group of four, inclusive of the dog. At one point, after the three men have agreed to contribute to a journal together, there is even an entry by the dog. The dog, however, is not just a source of humor; the statue is a monument to their need of a devoted friend who is always there for them.