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 Posted:   Mar 11, 2011 - 9:39 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

Another Woman also boasts great use of Erik Satie's Gymnopedie No. 3; Woody is a master of using music to set the mood.

 
 Posted:   Mar 12, 2011 - 3:23 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

I love the fact that the title has about 4 different meanings if you think about it.

I'll take a shot at that!

1. Marion Post's (Gena Rowlands) former self.
2. Hope (Mia Farrow)
3. The woman Rowlands had become; the sensible professor.
4. The woman she had become at film's end.

In Another Woman, people have said that Woody was ripping off Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, and while that does hold water, Woody's take isn't remotely cartoonish, despite the dream sequence, but I do see the comparisons. I'd like to think that the Allen version is subtle enough where people take a look at their own lives without having been the downright nasty person Scrooge was as opposed to Gena Rowlands' Marion Post character, who, as Woody stated, made safe and cold choices rather than the right ones. The dream sequence with Gene Hackman's character was really effective.

 
 Posted:   Mar 12, 2011 - 3:05 PM   
 By:   David Sones (Allardyce)   (Member)

I love the fact that the title has about 4 different meanings if you think about it.

I'll take a shot at that!

1. Marion Post's (Gena Rowlands) former self.
2. Hope (Mia Farrow)
3. The woman Rowlands had become; the sensible professor.
4. The woman she had become at film's end.

In Another Woman, people have said that Woody was ripping off Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, and while that does hold water, Woody's take isn't remotelt cartoonish, despite the dream sequence, but I do see the comparisons. I'd like to think that the Allen version is subtle enough where people take a look at their own lives without having been the downright nasty person Scrooge was as opposed to Gena Rowlands' Marion Post character, who, as Woody stated, made safe and cold choices rather than the right ones. The dream sequence with Gene Hackman's character was really effective.


There were other scenes that had a dream-like quality to me. I remember a critic commenting that he thought it was interesting how easily those two big pillows against the vent could block sound. And moments of characters walking through the room as they tell Marion the truth behind a recollection. I just love that scene with David Ogden Stiers, the way characters can suddenly shift in age, as if it's all not quite conscious reality. And wasn't Hackman just great? And Ian Holm? Or Sandy Dennis in her one scene. I just love the flow and evolution of the film. Woody can cram so much depth and content into 82 minutes. Who else does that, eh?

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 9:09 AM   
 By:   Robert0320   (Member)

Why does Allen mistrust original music in his films? I find the constant reuse of jazz standards and classical pieces distracting.

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 9:11 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

There were other scenes that had a dream-like quality to me. I remember a critic commenting that he thought it was interesting how easily those two big pillows against the vent could block sound. And moments of characters walking through the room as they tell Marion the truth behind a recollection. I just love that scene with David Ogden Stiers, the way characters can suddenly shift in age, as if it's all not quite conscious reality. And wasn't Hackman just great? And Ian Holm? Or Sandy Dennis in her one scene. I just love the flow and evolution of the film. Woody can cram so much depth and content into 82 minutes. Who else does that, eh?

I also like the muted tone this film has, whether it's Gena Rowlands' narration, the interactions between her and Ian Holm's character or even Sandy Dennis' relative outburst, it's all so subdued, but nonetheless compelling.

Tonight, I'm watching September, which is IIRC, an unrecquited love romantic circle kind of thing; if anything, seeing it in its entirety will cement my lifelong "love affair" with Dianne Wiest. wink

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 9:21 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

Why does Allen mistrust original music in his films? I find the constant reuse of jazz standards and classical pieces distracting.

He just prefers it, I guess; like Scorsese and Tarantino use rock songs in their films.

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 10:12 AM   
 By:   Graham S. Watt   (Member)

Just have to say that I personally find Allen's use of old jazz standards and classical music one of the many things that make a Woody Allen film a Woody Allen film - like the stark white-on-black titles. In EVERYONE SAYS I LOVE YOU there's a kind of different approach - the songs for the musical sequences segue into orchestral renditions, often under dialogue, and it's about as close to real underscore that Allen has got in the last 40 years. It was interesting, but it almost took some personality out of the movie. I don't think Woody is going to start hiring Tyler Bates or Alexandre Desplat at this stage in his career. In fact I hope he doesn't.

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 10:21 AM   
 By:   groovemeister   (Member)

Crimes And Misdemeanors - because it's the perfect blend of comedy and drama, with stellar performances

Manhattan - A CLASSIC ! ! !


Funnily enough, i never 'warmed' to Annie Hall'

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 12:07 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

Just have to say that I personally find Allen's use of old jazz standards and classical music one of the many things that make a Woody Allen film a Woody Allen film - like the stark white-on-black titles. In EVERYONE SAYS I LOVE YOU there's a kind of different approach - the songs for the musical sequences segue into orchestral renditions, often under dialogue, and it's about as close to real underscore that Allen has got in the last 40 years. It was interesting, but it almost took some personality out of the movie. I don't think Woody is going to start hiring Tyler Bates or Alexandre Desplat at this stage in his career. In fact I hope he doesn't.

Why Graham S. Watt you old minimalist sophisticate, you! I love the Windsor font, aka "Woody's Font"!

http://kitblog.com/2007/12/woody_allens_typography.html

I'm also a jazz aficionado and owe some of that to having been introduced to lots of music thanks to The Woodman's use of it in his movies. His taste is impeccable and always uses those songs and classical works to perfection.

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 5:26 PM   
 By:   David Sones (Allardyce)   (Member)

There were other scenes that had a dream-like quality to me. I remember a critic commenting that he thought it was interesting how easily those two big pillows against the vent could block sound. And moments of characters walking through the room as they tell Marion the truth behind a recollection. I just love that scene with David Ogden Stiers, the way characters can suddenly shift in age, as if it's all not quite conscious reality. And wasn't Hackman just great? And Ian Holm? Or Sandy Dennis in her one scene. I just love the flow and evolution of the film. Woody can cram so much depth and content into 82 minutes. Who else does that, eh?

I also like the muted tone this film has, whether it's Gena Rowlands' narration, the interactions between her and Ian Holm's character or even Sandy Dennis' relative outburst, it's all so subdued, but nonetheless compelling.


I forgot to mention Betty Buckley's blow-up scene; absolutely awesome. Nothing muted about THAT scene! smile

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 6:05 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

I forgot to mention Betty Buckley's blow-up scene; absolutely awesome. Nothing muted about THAT scene! smile

Compared to the rest of the film, yes, but it's a mere whisper next to some of the stuff from Husbands & Wives! eek

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2011 - 6:24 PM   
 By:   The Man-Eating Cow   (Member)

I don't think Woody is going to start hiring Tyler Bates or Alexandre Desplat at this stage in his career. In fact I hope he doesn't.

He did have an original score by Philip Glass in CASSANDRA'S DREAM. I'm glad he went back to his standard operational procedure.

I just watched ANNIE HALL again this afternoon. After all these years, the movie hasn't aged a day for me; it still feel fresh and new, despite the presence of younger versions of Jeff Goldblum, Christopher Walken and Sigourney Weaver. And it's use of narrative techniques is still impressive; say what you will about ANNIE HALL, but it was (and still is) a massively influential film.

As I age, the movie seems to get deeper and deeper with meaning for me; probably because my girlfriend and I have some of the same dynamics working in our relationship. Except she's Alvy Singer, and I'm Annie Hall; she's definitely much brighter than I am (or ever will be), but I'm the impulsive, live-in-the-moment type. Hey, I've always been of the opinion that women are smarter than men, so it's not a surprise I'm attracted to the brainy girls.

The quality of the DVD transfer isn't great, though. I'd like to see it remastered and put onto Blu-Ray.

 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2011 - 9:04 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

Just watched September (1987)

While the plot is merely an unrequited love soap opera, the Vermont country home setpiece, and especially the performances from all involved make September a much better film than much of the negative criticism I've read over the years indicates. Love the use of the Art Tatum-Ben Webster sides, the mentioning of Sam Waterston character's father having been blacklisted during the McCarthy era, and the fact that music and foreign films figure in these people's lives, like most people who populate Allen's films. As I mentioned previously, seeing September also cements my lifelong love affair with Dianne Wiest, who is the greatest Allen "stock player" ever. Denholm Elliott was in this, and I kept expecting him to say "It's like nothing you've ever gone after before"! This due more to his speaking patterns than any childhood association with his Marcus Brody role from Raiders.

I like Elaine Stritch's tough-as-nails/boozy broad role; her hard life is etched on her face, but she's the ultimate survivor and "moves on to the next crazy venture under the skies." Mia Farrow let loose and contributed genuine pathos with her character, Lane, who's based on Cheryl Crane, Lana Turner's daughter.

 
 Posted:   Mar 19, 2011 - 7:48 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

No one has mentioned Husbands & Wives '92. Which may turn out to be Allen's last great film. I think I'm right in thinking that Woody was going through the messy break-up with Mia Farrow at the time. It must have come out in the screenplay, as the three women (incl. Farrow) in this film are just awful.

Just watched this for the first time in a while. Yes, Husbands & Wives is one of Woody's best films! Everything about is just so impressive and well done. Sydney Pollack, Judy Davis, and even Juliette Lewis--who reminds me of an ex-girlfriend of mine in this, a spoiled intelligent rich girl--also is fine here. In fact, the Woody-Juliette portions of the movie are my favorite, though the two most intense scenes involve the other couple. Judy Davis and her erstwhile date to the opera, and the embarrassing argument between Sydney Pollack and Lysette Anthony's character, Samantha, is visceral.

Of the three women, Mia's character comes off the worst.

One of my favorite bits in it is the beginning, when Gabe Roth (Woody) is watching some scholar on TV quoting Albert Einstein, who said "God doesn't play dice with the universe", to which Gabe responds, "No, he just plays hide and seek."

I didn't even mind the "shaky cam" documentary-style stuff. smile

 
 Posted:   Mar 22, 2011 - 1:56 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

I'd never seen A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy until this past week. It's not one of Woody's that's mentioned very often, so for that reason I consider it his most "obscure" work.

Tony Roberts was never better, and Jose Ferrer truly appeared like he belonged in that time period. He's one of the greatest actors ever, IMO.

I liked Woody as a woulkd-be inventor and Mia Farrow, Mary Steenbergen, and that vastly underappreciated comic genius, Julie haggerty all looked their most beautiful here.

 
 Posted:   Mar 22, 2011 - 3:15 PM   
 By:   David Sones (Allardyce)   (Member)

...and that vastly underappreciated comic genius, Julie Haggerty...

She is brilliantly hilarious in Albert Brooks' Lost in America (1985). "Twenty-two! Twenty-two! Tweeeeenty-twoooo two two two two!!"

 
 Posted:   Mar 22, 2011 - 3:48 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

Shadows and Fog (1992)

I enjoyed this one more for the cinematic atmosphere it created rather than anything relating to the plot. I was quite impressed with John Cusack and John Malkovich's scene together. In fact, this is the first time I've noticed a Cusack performance. I'm sure Woody was impressed, as well, having cast him in Bullets Over Broadway.

As I mentioned previously, Shadows and Fog was a favorite of a friend of mine, who must've seen the film in the theater three or four times. Around that time he was doinking some middle-aged hottie who also happened to be a heroin addict...oh, the trivialities we remember.

 
 Posted:   Mar 22, 2011 - 5:50 PM   
 By:   David Sones (Allardyce)   (Member)

Shadows and Fog (1992)

I enjoyed this one more for the cinematic atmosphere it created rather than anything relating to the plot. I was quite impressed with John Cusack and John Malkovich's scene together. In fact, this is the first time I've noticed a Cusack performance. I'm sure Woody was impressed, as well, having cast him in Bullets Over Broadway.

As I mentioned previously, Shadows and Fog was a favorite of a friend of mine, who must've seen the film in the theater three or four times. Around that time he was doinking some middle-aged hottie who also happened to be a heroin addict...oh, the trivialities we remember.


Yep, it's all about the visual style for me. It's probably one of his least compelling plots, but perhaps his most visually stylized and movie-movie-ish. Gad what a lousy sentence.

 
 Posted:   Mar 22, 2011 - 7:53 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

Yep, it's all about the visual style for me. It's probably one of his least compelling plots, but perhaps his most visually stylized and movie-movie-ish. Gad what a lousy sentence.

It's probably what Woody would refer to as "an indulgence." He says as much about Manhattan Murder Mystery, which of course was originally intended to be in Annie Hall.

I'm sure you have Stig Bjorkman's excellent interview book, Woody Allen on Woody Allen. Heck, you must have it, seeing as we're the only two left contributing to this thread! wink

 
 Posted:   Mar 22, 2011 - 8:05 PM   
 By:   David Sones (Allardyce)   (Member)


I'm sure you have Stig Bjorkman's excellent interview book, Woody Allen on Woody Allen. Heck, you must have it, seeing as we're the only two left contributing to this thread! wink


I don't! But I just happen to be ready for a new book, so I'll get to uh-orderin'.

 
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