“Woody Wednesday” Discussion of Woody Allen’s 1989 movie “Crimes and Misdemeanors” (Part 2)

Crimes and Misdemeanors: A Discussion: Part 2

Uploaded by on Sep 23, 2007

Part 2 of 3: ‘What Does The Movie Tell Us About Ourselves?’
A discussion of Woody Allen’s 1989 movie, perhaps his finest.
By Anton Scamvougeras.

http://camdiscussion.blogspot.com/
antons@mail.ubc.ca

_________________-

One of my favorite Woody Allen movies and I reviewed it earlier but I wanted you to hear from somone else:

Guest Review: Crimes and Misdemeanors

07.13.11 | guest-blogs | FanFare Guests<!–Email this Post | –>Print this Post

Tags:

Crimes and Misdemeanors starring Martin LandauGuest blogger Alex Kittle writes:

Since enjoying Midnight in Paris so much, I’ve been dipping more intoWoody Allen‘s filmography. First up was Crimes and Misdemeanors, which interested me since it’s more of a drama than a romantic comedy (which is primarily what I’ve seen from him, it feels). The sizable cast features a number of loosely interconnected figures, all somehow dealing with love and disappointment. Judah (Martin Landau), a prominent ophthalmologist, is facing threats from his slightly unhinged mistress (Anjelica Huston) and is given a difficult choice to protect his marriage. Meanwhile, struggling documentary filmmaker Cliff (Woody Allen) is filming a special on his asshole brother-in-law (Alan Alda), a successful and lecherous comedy producer. He finds himself falling for the documentary’s producer Halley (Mia Farrow), as his own marriage has been failing. The two men’s lives seem unrelated, but come together through mutual acquaintances at a dinner party.

Crimes and Misdemeanors has a lot going on, balancing traumatic ruminations on death and faith with light-hearted romance and comedic dialogue. It’s a bit off-putting at times, but eventually the very different experiences of the two main characters begin to betray the darkness that can pervade any lifestyle or worldview. Cliff comes off as a slightly silly, intelligent film buff, but it’s clear he uses humor to overcome his own insecurities and cannot responsibly deal with his crumbling marriage. Judah seems so put-together, a wealthy doctor, husband, and father, but his own misgivings about his Jewish background and atheist present lead to a complete shift in ideology after he makes a life-changing decision. Their final meeting at the end is a pivotal scene.

The dialogue and characters are the standout of the film, with the story and tone a little too uneven for me. It’s a decent mix of comedy and drama, but doesn’t quite nail it, plus the ending felt abrupt despite the voiceover montage, somehow. But I loved the interactions between Allen and Farrow (they hang out and watch Singin’ in the Rain!) and his adorable niece. Alan Alda is hilarious and douchebaggy; Martin Landau brings the gravitas. It’s an interesting and entertaining film overall, but I didn’t all-out love it. For one thing, the way it ends with Farrow and Allen’s characters is frustratingly written, and I can’t help but think that this is the sort of thing that influences the one-sided sexism of movies like (500) Days of Summer, wherein women are untrustworthy and fickle just because they don’t fall for the protagonist. That’s a bit extreme, I guess, but I couldn’t help but have that line of thinking.

4/5

Pair This Movie With: Oh jeez. Um. Maybe something kind of noir-y, like The Square.

Alex Kittle is an art, movie, and comic geek with a penchant for nonsensical jokes and exaggerated claims. Her blog Film Forager explores movies of every genre, from weird high-concept sci-fi to classic brooding romance.

Related posts:

Discussion of Woody Allen’s 1989 movie “Crimes and Misdemeanors” (Part 1)

Crimes and Misdemeanors: A Discussion: Part 1 Uploaded by camdiscussion on Sep 23, 2007 Part 1 of 3: ‘What Does Judah Believe?’ A discussion of Woody Allen’s 1989 movie, perhaps his finest. By Anton Scamvougeras. http://camdiscussion.blogspot.com/ antons@mail.ubc.ca _____________ Today I am starting a discusssion of the movie “Crimes and Misdemeanors” by Woody Allen. This 1989 […]

Woody Allen’s movie “Midnight in Paris” wins an academy award (link to complete listing of all historical figures mentioned in “Midnight in Paris”)

Sleepers (1973)   Allen (left) wrote, directed and starred in this oddball love story, set 200 years in the future.  It was his first on-screen collaboration with Diane Keaton (second left), who went on to become one of the director’s muses in the early days of his career.   ___________ I have written more on […]

Can we learn from Woody Allen Films? (Part 2)

Looking at the (sometimes skewed) morality of Woody Allen’s best films. Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) Allen continues the art-as-salvation theme in Hannah and Her Sisters, an ensemble drama about family and infidelity. The film tells three stories, one of which stars Allen as a hypochondriac named Mickey. Terrified of death, Mickey begins a search […]

Chris Martin of Coldplay unknowingly lives out his childhood Christian beliefs (Part 3 of notes from June 23, 2012 Dallas Coldplay Concert, Martin left Christianity because of teaching on hell then he writes bestselling song that teaches hell exists)

Viva La Vida Published on Jun 23, 2012 by TheRyanj64 Coldplay’s Viva La Vida at American Airlines Center in Dallas on June 22, 2012 __________ Coldplay brought confetti, lights and thousands of fans to the American Airlines Center; see photos from their colorful show Photo Gallery News Sports Lifestyles   Comments (0)   5/11 Chris […]

“Woody Wednesdays” Woody Allen on God and Death

Good website on Woody Allen How can I believe in God when just last week I got my tongue caught in the roller of an electric typewriter? If Jesus Christ came back today and saw what was being done in his name, he’d never stop throwing up. If only God would give me some clear […]

Michelangelo Antonioni influenced Woody Allen and was discussed by Francis Schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer discussed modern films and how they showed the state of man. That is why I like Woody Allen’s films so much. He knows what the big issues are in life and even though he present the right answers he does grapple with the right questions. Michelangelo Antonioni heavily influenced Allen and below is […]

Review of “To Rome with Love”

Jesse Eisenberg – Press Conference “To Rome With Love” Published on Apr 21, 2012 by portugal888 Review: Allen’s ‘Rome’ delivers lackluster love Published: Tuesday, June 19 2012 11:06 a.m. MDT By David Germain View 4 photos » This film image released by Sony Pictures Classics shows, : Alec Baldwin as John, left, and Jesse Eisenberg […]

Woody Allen, ‘To Rome With Love’ Director, Talks ‘Midnight In Paris’ Success, Acting Career

How To Recover From a Break Up With Greta Gerwig Published on May 16, 2012 by younghollywood Young Hollywood is hanging out in NYC during the Tribeca film festival, where we chat with rising star Greta Gerwig about her hip slice-of-life movie, ‘Lola Versus’. Greta offers up some advice on how to get over a […]

June 14, 2012 Wall Street Journal interview of Woody Allen and he is still talking about the meaninglessness of existence

TO ROME WITH LOVE – conferenza stampa con Allen, Benigni e Cruz http://WWW.RBCASTING.COM Published on Apr 18, 2012 by RBcasting http://www.rbcasting.com Conferenza stampa del film “To Rome With Love”, scritto e diretto da Woody Allen. Tra gli interpreti, lo stesso Allen, Alec Baldwin, Roberto Benigni, Penelope Cruz, Judy Davis, Jesse Eisenberg, Ellen Page e Greta […]

Woody Allen’s worldview as seen in his movies

  I love the movie Crimes and Misdemeanors and have written on it many times in the past. This quote below sums up Woody Allen’s worldview which I disagree with. In fact, the person who said this actually could not live with its conclusions in the movie and committed suicide.   Because Allen continues to […]

Atheists have no basis for saying that Hitler was wrong!!!!!

On April 30, 2012 (67 years after Hitler killed himself) I stated on the Arkansas Times Blog: Hitler’s last few moments of life were filled with anxiety as they should have been. He went on to face his maker and pay dearly for his many sins. When I look at the never before released pictures […]

“Woody Wednesday” Will Allen and Martin follow same path as Kansas to Christ?

Several members of the 70′s band Kansas became committed Christians after they realized that the world had nothing but meaningless to offer. It seems through the writings of both Woody Allen and Chris Martin of Coldplay that they both are wrestling with the issue of death and what meaning does life bring. Kansas went through […]

Advertisements
Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: