Liebman imbues the figure with a mournful intelligence. …it’s possible to see in (his) eyes the calculations Oppenheimer is making about the fascist threat.
via Charles McNulty—LA Times
Liebman does such a good job as Oppenheimer that it feels more like an incarnation than a performance; he presents both the man’s arrogance and increasing inner doubts with admirable artistry.
via Terry Morgan—Stage Raw
… nowhere does that pay off more handsomely than in James Liebman’s “Oppie.” The complexity of his performance in that title role is distinguished by a kind of reticence and grace, a reluctance to shine and take center stage amid the noise — which is exactly right. He has the tall and thin demeanor of the enigmatic man he impersonates — a creature apart, sometimes cruel, with a perpetual question mark in eyes that seem always to be looking Beyond.
via Sylvie Drake—Cultural Weekly
James Liebman is terrific as Oppenheimer. He embodies the thrill of the science. … Mr. Liebman shows us Oppenheimer’s vanity, but he also believably conveys something deeper, the fear that unless mankind sees the terrible fury of his bomb, it will be used to start another, even more terrible war.
…he betrays the trust of those closest to him, and he survives. Liebman projects that strength, but he also makes Oppenheimer’s breakdown palpably alive. When he curls up in a fetal position on the floor, shaking at the horror of what he has created, you feel his pain.
via Samuel Garza Bernstein—Stage and Cinema
Perhaps not surprisingly, Liebman’s warts-and-all star turn as Oppie is the evening’s standout, a man forced to live the remaining twenty-two years of his life with the consequences of his actions, the abandonment of friends whose political beliefs he once shared and the knowledge that he has, metaphorically speaking, dropped a loaded gun on a playground.
via Steven Stanley—StageSceneLA
As Oppenheimer, James Liebman creates a likable genius with one toe on the autistic spectrum. He’s often so inwardly focused he seems aloof; he’s stubborn when faced with change; yet he can be lively and engaged in all kinds of relationships, from military to intimate. Liebman grounds his character by bringing intense stillness to the many solo moments playwright Tom Morton-Smith gives him; we find ourselves watching closely for his smallest facial gesture.
via Theatre Ghost
Liebman cleverly balances Oppenheimer’s social unease, his brilliant mind and his sexual appetite.
via Peter Foldy—Hollywood Revealed