Certain topics are hard to deal with, like considering our elderly parents and their mortality. We sometimes want our parents to live forever; the idea of them not being here is more than we can handle. So, what do you do to make their time here and your time with them the most memorable? You call them daily and do a check-in. You visit them physically as often as possible. You have serious discussions with them about their past, their youth, and the family experiences that you all shared.

Imagine taking things even further and taking photos and home movies of them, documenting their remembrances of those occasions—those candid, happy, or angry shots.

Something extraordinary like that is what photographer Larry Sultan recently brought to Broadway at Studio 54 with “Pictures from Home,” beautifully written by Sharr White based on Sultan’s photo memoir.

One of the first things that strikes you about this drama is that the actors consistently break the fourth wall and talk directly to the audience, as if we all came by their home to watch home movies, look at photos, and listen in as they banter back and forth about them. We are there, intently listening and hearing the history of a family.

Their son Larry is constantly flying to the San Fernando Valley to document his family’s lives and memories, and ask questions about the choices they made in life. Larry is trying to find his own path, to understand why he is the husband and father he is today. At times he seems inquisitive and other times accusatory as he grills his father Irving, a traveling salesman, who was barely home during Larry’s and his younger brother’s youth, but very much provided for the family. Irving revisits the prejudice he experienced when he came to this country and had to make a living to support his wife and two sons.

Larry also asks questions of his mother Jean, who sells real estate, but was always the homebody.

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The audience was simply riveted by the questions that Larry asked and the probing answers he received and so desperately needed. Irving does not have a lot of patience for Larry’s questions and finds himself often having to defend being away so much. But he will declare that he provided for his family, which he did. Jean, while she wants to help Larry with his project, knows that this is about more than Larry is letting on.

Sitting in the audience, you could easily see yourself in Larry’s place. How many times have we all wanted to record and organize a unique history of our family to show the mark that our parents left on this world, and on us? This comedy drama lets us experience this Jewish family’s journey.

In the end, this play is about the relationships between parents and their children, and the strong love and bond they possess—a love and bond that makes the idea of eventually losing our parents difficult to come to terms with. What’s important, though, is that you realize appreciating your time with your family, sharing that love and those moments, are the things that will get you through the rest.

There are definitely emotional moments in this play, but the joy of having had experiences with those marvelous people who raised us is simply priceless. It is also a joy that can be passed on, and should be.

This cast was so stupendous, you found yourself just sitting in awe. Danny Burstein was magnificent as Larry. He gave this character so many levels: a man documenting his parents and family history, while trying to understand the choices his father made when they were growing up, and trying to not admit to his own insecurities and fears.

Nathan Lane was as spirited as ever as Irving. Lane always shows every intricate detail of his character. He makes you laugh and he makes you think.

Zoe Wanamaker brought a tenderness, understanding, and sauciness to the role of Jean.

These three actors make it all look so easy. The question was asked, “How do you capture a lifetime?” These exceptional thespians answer that question: with tenderness, laughter, feistiness, and love. Their performances were enhanced by the stunning direction of Bartlett Sher.

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