Dear Woody Allen Movies,
Okay, well, I hate Annie Hall, and I don’t really want to talk bout it beyond that. Diane Keaton drives me crazy. She’s this strange amalgamation of helpless and indignant that results in a continual shrill expression of white woman, neurotic victim-ry. And she does it in all her movies, so I can’t really blame Woody Allen, but I can try.
And I think Woody Allen is a dirty old man (obviously). Actually, he’s kind of a continually shrill expression of white man, neurotic victim-ry.
I don’t think he’s funny.
Though I do like Everyone Says I love You, possibly due to the fact that my sister made me watch it over and over again as a child. To be fair, I also didn’t like Dirty Dancing until something like the tenth time I saw it (as she also ensured).
But it’s hard not to love Everyone Says I love You, because well, it has everyone in it, kind of like The Outsiders, and they literally are all saying I love you. While singing. Pretty poorly. And dancing. Pretty clumsily.
Plus, almost everything seems to end in exclamation points. And the lines include these gems:
Goldie (of course Goldie Hawn is in it): You couldn’t decide if you wanted to be a psychoanalyst or a writer!
Woody Allen (with a little too much truth): So I compromised: I’m a writer and a patient!
And: I haven’t touched my treadmill in weeks! 572 weeks! That’s eleven years.
Goldie, of course, is a wealthy, guilty, liberal Democrat who gives speeches about how she thinks we should have open prisons! And the inmates should be allowed to do their own cells with their own personal decorators!
But of course it’s creepy as hell, because Woody Allen seduces Julia Roberts—which, first of all, are you kidding me? But also, he manages it because his daughter is best friends with Julia Robert’s psychotherapist’s daughter, and has been spying on her sessions. So DJ (daughter of Woody Allen) fills him in on all of Julia Robert’s favorite, unfaithful, romantic fantasies. Like, “don’t forget to blow on her back, between her shoulder blades, it makes her crazy.” Gah!
Anyway, it’s hard not to kind of love a movie with Natalie Portman, Edward Norton, Alan Alda, Goldie Hawn, Drew Barrymore, Natasha Lyonne, Gaby Hoffman, and entire lists of people whose only character title is “Groucho Party Dancer.” Yes, that’s right, I know how to look things up on IMDB.
So mostly because of Everyone Says I Love You, I gave in and went to go see Vicky Cristina Barcelona this year. Mostly, I think that Penelope Cruz was absolutely beautiful. And Woody Allen is a creepy old man, and I don’t get the obsession with Scarlett Johansson. Okay, I get it, and I don’t understand it. I really just think it’s a fixation on her lips. And her boobs. And butt. Like I said, I get it. But I don’t understand the claim that she’s a good actress. I did like that David Denby in his New Yorker review said her sexuality is more developed than her personality.
What can I say? I’m not into you, Woody Allen movies. I get enough white liberal neurosis served up hot daily. (Except for Everyone Says I Love You. Excuse me, Drew Barrymore is about to cheat on Edward Norton with the criminal Goldie invited to her birthday– “he’s rehabilitated!” In case you were curious, Drew Barrymore says, “Very interesting. I’ve never been kissed by a sociopath before…”)