Mary (Debra Winger) and Michael (playwright Tracy Letts) are late middle-aged survivors, marooned in the 30th year of their marriage.

Watching Mary and Michael shuffle around and about one another, passing each other in the halls and rooms of their very nice, expensive California house, they seem like ghosts who haven’t been told they’re dead.

They share the vocabulary of ghosts who have run out of anything interesting to say. “We’re almost out of toothpaste,” Michael shouts from the bathroom.

“I’ll get some today at the market,” Mary answers from the kitchen. They peck a kiss, a hug, and then go to their careers in well-paid cubicles and board rooms. Oh no! You’re thinking, this is going to be one of those … hold on. It’s not.

Within 10 minutes of Azazel Jacobs’s beautifully directed and sharply written script, we see something strange here. Sometimes, they stand or sit facing each other with lips apart, eyes open, deep breaths inhaled as if to say something. What?

What Mary and Michael want to do is confess, unburden. You see, for over a year, both have been carrying on furtive affairs with much younger bodies. Oh no, you say, this is going to … No. It’s not. Be quiet and pay attention. Something wonderful is going to happen here.

The problem is that our older couple have liked strawberry, and then one day, they discovered chocolate. Now chocolate wants them to give up strawberry and come to live with them.

So Mary and Michael promise they will make it happen this weekend, after their college son comes home and returns to school. Then, M. and M. promise to give up Strawberry. We know that it ain’t gonna happen that way, and this is why.

M. and M. having tasted the illicit, exciting taste of chocolate and enjoyed the guilty flavor, are now conflicted.

This is the real meaning of the parted lips and long thoughtful pauses. It wasn’t really about confession. Strawberry, it seems wasn’t just a flavor, it was who they are, who they always have been; it wasn’t about lies, it was always about truth.

The fifth player in this delightful, truly romantic, truly comedic romp, is that great universal player: The iPhone. It’s with each of them when lies are told in bars and bedrooms, in parked cars and furtive night assignations, and at the end of a very fast 96 minutes, the iPhone will help change the direction of their lives, and change everything. It’s an ending that will make you gasp, chuckle, and finally laugh out loud.

Tracy Letts is, as usual, very good, very real and professional. Both Aidan Gillen and Melora Walters as the illicit flavors, are competent and well cast; but it’s Winger, the once upon a time electric, vibrating ingenue of “Terms and Endearment” and “Officer and a Gentleman,” who will knock your socks off.

There are sex scenes here, played out the way real middle-aged lovers play them; passion is here, but scant nudity.

Winger emerges as a three-dimensional middle-aged woman, with little regard for makeup, with tousled grey hair hiding under many dark washes, and a longing for something new besides a new tube of toothpaste. She and Michael will find it, but not where they were looking, and when she does, and when you watch it happen, you may see some of yourselves. And that last call on the iPhone will make you want to get up and applaud. Enjoy.

J.P. Devine is a former stage and screen actor.

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