Woody Allen is God


Movies

Grand Lodge

So, any other Paizonians acknowledge the truth of the absolute greatness of Woody Allen's movies?

And.... Which are the best of his movies?

1) Another Woman
2) September
3) Vicky Christina Barcelona
4) Manhattan
5) Whatever Works
6) Hannah and Her Sisters
7) Deconstructing Harry
8) Annie Hall
9) The Front
10) Radio Days


Never seen Another Woman. Is that autobiographical? ;)

Grand Lodge

heh, no, not autobiographical.

Like September and Interiors, it's not a comedy.


my favourite comedian

1) Zelig
2) Play It Again, Sam
3) Hannah and Her Sisters
4) Annie Hall
5) The Purple Rose of Cairo
6) Manhattan
7) Deconstructing Harry
8) Broadway Danny Rose
9) Bullets Over Broadway
10) Stardust Memories

list of others I like after:
Manhattan Murder Mystery
Love and Death
Everything You Always Wanted to Know ...
Sleeper
Another Woman
Crimes and Misdemeanors
Husbands and Wives
Sweet and Lowdown
Shadows and Fog
Match Point
Interiors
Take the Money and Run
Bananas
Mighty Aphrodite
Radio Days

Grand Lodge

Zelig as #1???

Especially on a list that doesn't have Sleeper, Love and Death or Bananas. I always figured that Zelig had to be grouped with those others. (Throwing in Small Time Crooks from later years.

The only thing I have to say about Zelig is that, after the MLB steroid Congressional Hearing, the Congressman who mispronounced Bud Selig's name to rhyme with "Zelig" -- had to be done on purpose, and remains one of the best insults against Selig.

Grand Lodge

Purple Rose of Cairo is interesting.

Absolutely one of the greatest acting jobs of any movie in the 80s. Easily Jeff Daniel's greatest performance, absolutely brilliant. Danny Aiello does well also.

I readily acknowledge that I need to go back and rewatch it -- I was totally unprepared the first time I saw it and my verisimilitude was broken, shattered even, and I could not enjoy the film at all. (The same case with Alice -- which doesn't feature a brilliant acting perfomance).

Now that I know what the movie is, I'm sure I can watch it again and gain an appreciation for it.

Of course, I still can't see putting it on the top 10 list. Heck, I couldn't even fit Interiors on my list (criminal), or Mighty Aphrodite, Match Point or Cassandra's Dream.


Love and Death
Zelig
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex
the Sleeper
Shadows and Fog
The Front

Grand Lodge

Holy Cow that's two people that put Zelig in the top five! I can't believe it; I doubt I'd put it in his top 30 list -- in fact I think only Small Time Crooks is weaker. Heck, I'd put Anything Else and Hollywood Endings ahead of Zelig.

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I also noticed niether of you put Vicky Christina Barcelona or Whatever Works on your lists. I'm curious (since they're very recent), have you seen them? My students, who are late teens no less, say Vicky Christina Barcelona is one of their favorite movies (not just Woody Allen films). And if you haven't seen Whatever Works -- OMG, watch it tonight!


I have been disapointed with most of Woody's films since Mighty Aphrodite.

There's just something about the mockumentory style of Zelig that gets me. I also like his style tribuets movies more than his standared Woodyesque ones which is why Love and Death and Shadows and fog are in my top 5.


Woody Allen has long been my favorite filmmaker. I think I'd rate his top ten as:

1) Purple Rose of Cairo
2) Crimes and Misdemeanors
3) Annie Hall
4) Manhattan
5) Hannah and Her Sisters
6) Radio Days
7) Deconstructing Harry
8) Stardust Memories
9) Match Point
10) Alice

But choosing just ten films from someone with as large and diverse a canon as Allen is really tough. I feel guilty leaving off Mighty Aphrodite, Sleeper, Shadows and Fog, Bullets Over Braodway, Hollywood Ending, Zelig, Interiors, Love and Death, oh hell, and everything else.

Grand Lodge

Xabulla, you say you like Mockumentaries -- do you know Christopher Guest's movies? Check out Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show and A Mighty Wind. Great stuff.

Yoda8myhead, I can totally not argue with your list, (though Crimes and Misdemeanors at #2...?) except for #10 Alice. It seems to not belong with the others on the list. I'm curious why you like it so much.


W E Ray wrote:
Yoda8myhead, I can totally not argue with your list, (though Crimes and Misdemeanors at #2...?) except for #10 Alice. It seems to not belong with the others on the list. I'm curious why you like it so much.

C&M is a major condender for the top spot, even. It's has such haunting moral ambiguity and deals with some incredibly dark subjects while maintaining Allen's normal level of humor. As for Alice, it's a modern day fairy tale and I love the fanciful elements it contains. While I think the ultimate realization the protagonist comes to is a bit shallow and clichéd, I think it's an often overlooked gem among a stellar catalogue of films.

Grand Lodge

Like I said, I can totally not argue with your list. Crimes and Misdemeanors is brilliant and is easily on my top 12 or 13 list -- which could just as easily be a 12 or 13-way tie for first place.

I'm actually surprised no one's called shenanigans on my #9, The Front, which Allen neither wrote nor directed. Still, it was his inner circle of friends who did write, direct and produce it at a time when he was still very much involved in all that.

I'm also surprised no one else has voiced gushing, inundating love for Whatever Works and Vicky Christina Barelona. I can see why "recent" films such as Scoop & Small Time Crooks don't get love and why recent films such as Cassandra's Dream & Everyone Says I Love You wouldn't be considered top-listers, but his last two films -- they could both be put on his top 5 list.

I'm curious, have you guys seen these two yet?


I haven't seen anything since Hollywood Endings but I used to be into Woody Allen so much I started affecting words like "chutzpah" and "oy gevalt!"

My Top Ten in no particular order:

Sleeper
Love and Death
Annie Hall
Manhattan
Deconstructing Harry
Stardust Memories
Crimes and Misdemeanors
Hannah and Her Sisters
Broadway Danny Rose
Husbands and Wives

"Don Juan de Doodlebug? They should have cut his f%!%ing dick off!"

Paraphrased from the last one mentioned.


Play It Again, Sam
Hannah and Her Sisters
Annie Hall
Manhattan
Zelig
The Purple Rose of Cairo
Broadway Danny Rose
Stardust Memories
Deconstructing Harry

and Midnight in Paris


Numerian wrote:
Play It Again, Sam

That is a great film, but I disqualified it from my list because it's another one of those non-WA directed WA films.

But that's only because I'm a pedantic amateur film critic.

Grand Lodge

Play It Again, Sam has to be considered eligible to be on the list. Allen wrote the play! Remember it was still early; Allen was just a name stand-up comic and small time TV writer. He wrote the play and played the lead role. Moreover, it's the beginning of the "Woody" character archetype.

The Front is the one I could see being disqualified since he was only the co-star. Sure, it can be considered eligible since Allen and Joffe and Rollins and Bernstein were all kinda like a "team," working together. (Though that still doesn't include the Director.)


Take the Money and Run he was a cello player in the marching band. Priceless.

"I have a gub...."


I worked in a record store a bunch of years back and one day Billy Joel came in. My boss went and got him to sign a record and the other employee said:

"Could you just write 'To Phyllis Weinstein...'"

to which Billy Joel responded:

"'You lying, unfaithful b*~$#.'"

I'm not much of a Billy Joel fan, but I have to admit that I was impressed.

On the other hand, of course, they're both New York Jews, so maybe it's not that impressive.

@W.E. Ray--I didn't say Numerian couldn't put it on his list, I said I disqualified it from mine.

@Spanky--I liked when his soap-gun melted in the rain.


"You remind me of my ex-girlfriend. She was a Trotskyite who became a Jesus freak and was later arrested for selling pornographic dot-to-dot books."

Hee hee!

Grand Lodge

Awww, it's about to go off... it's about to go off!
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Woody Allen:

Hey, don't knock masterbation;
it's sex with someone I love.
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Years ago my mother gave me a bullet.
A bullet.
And I kept that bullet in my breast pocket. . . . And ten years after that I was walking down a busy New York City street when a berserk... evangelist... heaved a Gideon bible through a hotel window.
That bible would've gone through my heart,
if it wasn't for the bullet!
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How can I believe in god when just last week I got my tongue caught in the roller of an electric typewriter?
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I sold the memoirs of my love life to Parker Bros and they're going to make a game of it.
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I have an intense desire to return to the womb. Any woman's.
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I tended to place my wife under a pedestal.
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More than any time in history mankind faces a crossroads. One road leads to despair and utter hopelessness, the other to total extinction. let us pray that we have the wisdom to choose correctly.
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I would never belong to any club that would have someone like me for a member. (Like the song "Hurt" this line does not belong, anymore, to the person who created it!)
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Life is divided into the horrible and the miserable. The horrible are those sad cases you see: terminal diseases, blindness, paralysis,... The miserable is everybody else. So you should be thankful that you're miserable.


If there is a God, why did he allow Nazis?

Tell him, tell your son!

How the hell do I know why there were Nazis? I don't even know how the can-opener works.

(Maybe not exact)

Grand Lodge

Recently my father lost his job -- he was mechanically employed, my father, and worked for the same company for over twenty years. And last week the company replaced him with a machine that does everything my father did except it does it faster, cheaper and better.

The sad part is my mother immediately went out and bought one, too.

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I noticed you've been eyeing my gold watch. This was my grandfather's pocket watch; it has much much sentimental value.
My grandfather,
on his deathbed,
sold me this watch.


Bisexuality immediately doubles your chance for a date on Saturday night.

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You are a great lover!

I practice a lot when I'm alone.

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With you it's all nihilism, cynicism, sarcasm and orgasm.

Hey! In France I could run for office on that slogan--and win!

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I believe there is someone out there watching us. Unfortunately, it's the government.

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My mother tried to commit suicide by swallowing Mah-jong tiles.


Hey, hey, W.E. Ray--

So here's a question for you and any other film studies type:

I have read that Woody played The Fool in a version of King Lear by Godard. !?! That sounds like the most amazing thing I've ever heard, but I have never been able to find a single shred of evidence that such a film actually exists.

What's the deal? And is it any good? Anyone?

Grand Lodge

@ Doodlebug,

Yes and No.

Yes there is a Peter Sellars "version" of Lear from the early-mid 80s. Burgess Meredith and Molly Ringwold play alongside Sellars.

It sucks.

But it's not really a Woody Allen movie. He makes a brief appearance in the film, that's all.


I'd watch any Godard film once, even if I knew it was going to suck.

However, that's probably not going to happen since I can only find a videocassette copy selling for, like, $80.00.

Grand Lodge

Anywhere near Swarthmore college?.... And if you are can you get a friend with a Swarthmore college library card?.... In the Reference section they used to have a copy. You have to have a Swarthmore college library card and watch it in their library, but....

And I'm sure lots of other colleges have it. Don't know but it seems schools like NYU and USC would HAVE to have it. Call around.


Well, I'm in the same quadrant of the country...

Grand Lodge

It's been too long....
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I just saw "Wonder Wheel" in the theater.

Really astoundingly good. Reminiscent of "Match Point" or maybe "Crimes and Misdimeanors" just decidedly more "Broadway Danny Rose" for intensity, and of "Purple Rose of Cairo," too. But totally different and with the classic love-triangle in a similar vein as "Hannah and Her Sisters" -- all in 50's Coney Island. Jim Belushi and Kate Winslet both give by FAR their best acting performances.

At least, I say I just saw it; I kid you not at the climactic scene the fire alarm went off at the theater (burnt popcorn) so I don't know how it ends!

Still, great movie!

Dark Archive

2 people marked this as a favorite.

I like that movie where there's a creepy guy who dates a woman long-term just so he can groom her adopted daughter to be his perfect mate, then dumps the woman and marries the daughter.

Oh wait, that's not his movie, that's his life. :P

I find it rather dumbfounding that the recent spat of sexual harassment accusations haven't resulted in Allen's fall...especially since there have been quite a few accusations directed at him over the last 20 years. Then again, it's Hollywood, where if the critics like your films, nobody seems to give a damn about that stuff. You can even get away with raping an underage girl and having Meryl Streep be one of your biggest cheerleaders.


I know that is not a thing anymore, but perhaps some people stop repeating that stuff anytime someone mentions Woody Allen.

Repeating it does not make it true.


Is Woody Allen even doing anything anymore...

Dark Archive

Cap'n Siskel, FaWtLy Critic wrote:
Is Woody Allen even doing anything anymore...

I dunno. Ask his daughter-wife.

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