WOODY WEDNESDAY  Ranking Woody Allen’s 47 movies!!!! Part 6

Ranking Woody Allen’s 47 movies!!!! Part 1

The Best & The Rest: Every Woody Allen Film Ranked

This week, Woody Allen‘s 2016 title (for as we all know, there’s one each year), “Cafe Society,” starring Kristen Stewart, Jesse Eisenberg, Steve Carell, Corey Stoll, Blake Lively and Anna Camp, opens after a warm reception as the opening film at the most recent Cannes Film Festival. You can read our take from Cannes here, or hang on to scroll through and see where it lands on the list below, but we thought this would be a good time to gussy up our previous sprawling two-part Allen retrospective, and because we’ve been a little harmonious around here of late and miss the sounds of sobbing and breaking crockery, to rank it.

READ MORE: The Best And The Rest: Every Stanley Kubrick Ranked

Weathering personal scandal and coming in and out of fashion like flares, Allen’s been at constant work as a director for five decades now, and “Cafe Society” marks his 47th theatrically-released feature. Which means we have a lot to get through, so let’s get straight to it, shall we? Here, ranked worst to best, are all of Woody Allen’s theatrical features —with any list this long, there’s bound to be massive disagreement, so remember, the comments section awaits your ire. Or your congratulations, on the slim chance you agree with all of it.

 

 

 

alice-woody-allen-mia-farrow33. “Alice” (1990)
A dissatisfied and spoiled middle-aged Manhattanite who gave up her career to raise a family (Mia Farrow) has her mundane, yet hyper-privileged world turned upside down when she meets what she believes is the man of her dreams (Joe Mantegna) at her children’s school. Feeling guilty about adultery she hasn’t even committed yet, Alice seeks out a Chinese herbalist and things take a turn for the whimsical and romantic. One herb gives her sexual confidence, another grants her powers of invisibility which she abuses to spy on the object of her affection, and another brings back a ghost of her past (Alec Baldwin, playing a reckless old boyfriend as an apparition) which allows her to relive old memories. Co-starring William Hurt, Blythe Danner and Judy Davis, while mildly cute the film — a loose reworking of Fellini’s “Juliet of the Spirits” with elements also clearly referencing episodes from “Alice in Wonderland” — is a little forgettable. But if it’s something of a misfire, it’s at least a well-intentioned and largely harmless one.

 

Deconstructing Harry – Trailer

 

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deconstructing-harry-woody-allen-elizabeth-shue-billy-crystal32. “Deconstructing Harry” (1997)
One of Allen’s most uncompromised, angriest works, “Deconstructing Harry” is unfortunately just too messy to really capitalize on its punchy energy. Allen plays Harry Block, a tortured writer who is undergoing a breakdown in his twilight years, as fantasy and reality begin to merge. While he has used his friends and family for inspiration frequently, his works start to come to life and intermingle with his own, throwing him into a tailspin as he also deals with a lover and a career honor he feels is undeserved. The film is one of Allen’s most autocritical works, taking to task both his critics and his own more onanistic tendencies, but it’s also filled with a number of absurdist touches provided by a peculiar all-star cast — look out for Billy Crystal in a memorable cameo as The Devil. “Deconstructing Harry” has moments of free-form hilarity, but the self-serving pettiness of his characters, while refreshingly unadorned, also make it difficult to really connect with this portrait of an artist in crisis, flailing and railing even as his work begins to cannibalize him.

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