Archive for the Woody Allen Category

Life Affirmation of the Day

Posted in Film, Of the Day, Woody Allen with tags , , , , , on 9 November, 2008 by Ally

Woody Allen in Hannah and Her Sisters (1986)

Woody Allen’s ensemble comedy-drama Hannah and Her Sisters includes a plot in which Mickey Sachs (Allen) believes he has a brain tumour. After being told by the doctors that he is in fact perfectly healthy, his initial elation is quickly replaced with an unshakeable fear of death. He briefly converts to Catholicism, much to the chagrin of his Jewish parents, but it proves useless because he is unable to believe in a God.

Later in the film, he tells Holly (Diane Wiest) the story of how he regained his joie de vivre. After a failed suicide attempt, he aimlessly wandered the streets, finally reaching a movie house. The film playing was the Marx Brothers classic Duck Soup.

And I started to feel, how can you even think of killing yourself? I mean, isn’t it so stupid? I mean look at all the people up there on the screen, y’know, they’re real funny and… What if the worst is true? What if there’s no God, and you only go around once and that’s it? Well, y’know, don’t you want to be part of the experience? You know, what the hell, it’s not all a drag.

And it’s true, you know. It’s not all a drag.

The Purple Rose of Cairo

Posted in Film, Woody Allen with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 30 September, 2008 by Ally

Woody Allen, 1985

They always say you ought to write what you know, which is why so many films chronicle the creative process. From Sunset Boulevard to Adaptation, Hollywood’s favourite subject is itself. But great as they are, most of these films seem determined to make the audience understand the pain of the artist, the stress of putting together a production, how hard it is to make something look effortless. It’s rare to find a film that appreciates the finished product above all, and understands the spell it casts over the ordinary person sat there in the dark.

Woody Allen’s The Purple Rose of Cairo is one of those films. Set in Depression-era New Jersey, it stars Mia Farrow as Cecilia. She’s a timid woman with an abusive husband (Danny Aiello), and a stressful waitressing job which she constantly jeopardizes with her clumsiness and daydreaming. Her only comfort is the cinema, where she can lose herself in shimmering Hollywood gloss for an hour and a half.

Continue reading

Quote of the Day

Posted in Film, Of the Day, Woody Allen with tags , , , on 13 September, 2008 by Ally

I watched Radio Days last night, but I don’t feel like writing up a full review. It’s one of my favourites, so I’d either dissect it and spoil it for myself, or overflow with praise and make you physically sick. I know, I know, I’m a bad critic! Anyway, I did feel like sharing one of my many favourite lines from the film.

I compromised when I picked Martin. I mean, I wanted someone tall, handsome and rich. Three out of three I gave up.

Mother (Julie Kavner)

Quote of the Day

Posted in Film, Of the Day, Woody Allen with tags , , , , on 8 September, 2008 by Ally

I may have been too rash in awarding Ginger Rogers the title Ankles of the Week on Friday. A viewing of The Lady Eve made me seriously consider revoking her award and giving it to Barbara Stanwyck. But Miss Rogers won the award fair and square, and it’s only my own indecisiveness that put it in jeopardy. Or is it? Anyway, I have decided to replace weekly awards with daily ones. Not every day, of course, that would be absurd. But today I do have an outstanding quote to present to you.

“He’s working on a vehicle for Helen for next season. She plays Jesus’ mother. It’s a whole Oedipal thing. He loves her, wants to do in the father, well you can see the complications.”

Sid Loomis (Harvey Fierstein)

Quote of the Day was taken from Bullets Over Broadway (1994), directed by Woody Allen and co-written by Woody Allen and Douglas McGrath.

Manhattan Murder Mystery

Posted in Film, Woody Allen with tags , , , , , , , , on 4 September, 2008 by Ally

It’s one of those Ronseal titles, isn’t it? You know, does exactly what it says on the tin. Manhattan Murder Mystery (Woody Allen, 1993) is a murder mystery set in Manhattan. There’s a mystery and a murder. And all this murder and mystery happens… in Manhattan.

Woody Allen in Manhattan Murder Mystery

"My life is passing before my eyes. The worst part about it is that I'm driving a used car."

The setting is Manhattan, the mystery is a murder and the murder is a mystery. Married couple Larry and Carol Lipton (Woody Allen and Diane Keaton) live in a high-rise Manhattan apartment, where it’s easy to suspect but difficult to prove. After their neighbour Lillian House unexpectedly dies, Carol’s imagination is fueled by a screening of Double Indemnity, and she begins to suspect Lillian’s husband Paul of murder. Larry is unenthused by the prospect of spying on nice Mr. House, but recently-divorced Ted (Alan Alda) is keen to investigate with Carol, leaving Larry more suspicious of foreplay than foul play. Continue reading