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By now, the family-dysfunction-at-Christmastime trope is as reliable as it is played-out. But it sometimes lends itself to magic, as in the French director Arnaud Desplechin’s messy, cerebral 2008 film A Christmas Tale. The Buddhist of Castleknock, a work by the Irish playwright Jim O’Hanlon that Solas Nua is presenting as part of its regular series of readings, promises similar fireworks. Set in a Dublin suburb and surely meant to invoke Hanif Kureishi’s novel The Buddha of Suburbia, O’Hanlon’s satirical play centers on the grown-up children of a traditional, middle-class family, one of whom returns home a Buddhist convert. In Kureishi’s bildungsroman, the title character escapes from sprawling South London to the British capital and New York. But O’Hanlon’s Buddhist takes the opposite, and possibly scarier, journey—back from bustling London and up his parents’ driveway.
THE READING TAKES PLACE AT 7 P.M. AT FLASHPOINT, 916 G ST. NW. FREE. (202) 315-1317.