Friday, October 1, 2010
Written and Directed by Woody Allen
Starring Javier Bardem, Scarlett Johansen, Rebecca Hall, (I always groan when I see) Penelope Cruz
two young american touristas spend time in barcelona. they couldn't be more different, but they are attracted to the same spanish painter guy. they each, in their own time have sex with said spaniard. then SPOILER! they leave barcelona.
This was alright. I don't think it's a standout in the Allen oeuvre, all time or late-period. Writing, direction and acting came to us through the standard Allen naturalistic lens and the characters and their interactions were all close enough to believable to be acceptable. But that's all it was, and telling a story that's good enough well enough doesn't get anybody anywhere.
The story was a story that you could hear one of the principals telling their grandchildren--in fact, that framing device might have been preferable to the third party narration that we got--and you could see people doing what these people did. But so what? Is it supposed to be revelatory that a Bohemian-type woman enters and exits a multi-party relationship with a Spanish artist? That a tighter (inexplicably the best friend of the freer) woman briefly escapes her engagement in the bed of that same passionate Spaniard? That that Spaniard's passion needs taming by one of those women for his life to be constructive?
i'm not a fan of woody allen. his older stuff is too manhattan paranoid for me, and the newer stuff i always feel like i'm digging it, and then it ends, and i think to myself "yup. still don't like woody allen stuff" why do i fall for it every time? it's like the weatherman, i inevitably fall for his bullshit, and then remember their craft is shit. and they have no clue what the weather will be like. do i believe in magic? no. do i like woody allen? remind me to read this next time an allen movie is up on our list. it's entirely frustrating. i could have really liked this movie. i was with it right up until the last 15 minutes. i don't exactly know how it could have ended, or what i was looking for, but when i walk away from a movie regretting the time i wasted watching it.... i mean, really. what is the point? there was no real self discovery, there was no development....wait a minute....i would use those exact sentences to describe the twilight saga. is stephanie meyer really a pen name for woody allen? is he trying to draw the affections of teenage girls? i'm sensing a pattern here....holy crap. i think i'm on to something....something way more interesting, and way more worth my brain thought, and with a better, more entertaining ending than that movie.