WOODY WEDNESDAY Ranking Woody Allen’s 47 movies!!!! Part 12

WOODY WEDNESDAY Ranking Woody Allen’s 47 movies!!!! Part 12

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.

Blue Jasmine Official Trailer #1 (2013) – Woody Allen Movie HD

 

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Blue-Jasmine-woody-allen-cate-blanchett18. “Blue Jasmine” (2013)
When Allen’s on form there is no better (male) writer/director of complicated and “difficult” female roles, and when that talent meets an actress on form, the results have been spectacular (think of Judy Davis in “Husbands and Wives,” Dianne Wiest in “Hannah and her Sisters” or Diane Keaton in “Annie Hall“). But the only time in recent years the stars have aligned in a comparable manner is with Cate Blanchett‘s Oscar-winning turn in “Blue Jasmine.” Supported by the always-terrific Sally Hawkins, the suddenly resourceless and disgraced socialite Jasmine is a self-involved, neurotic nightmare and Blanchett is fearless about plumbing her absolute lowest depths. In fact, her performance is so stellar, it kind of blasts the rest of the film, which involves not the most engaging or insightful plot Allen has ever delivered, off the screen. “Blue Jasmine” could have been stronger in other departments, especially as its themes of affluence vanished overnight as a result of shady financial deals has more pointed topicality than we usually see from Allen. But as it is it’s almost wholly a vehicle for a towering Blanchett, and who can complain about that?

 

Bananas (1971) – Trailer – Woody Allen

 

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Bananas17. “Bananas” (1971)
Opening with one of his all-time best set pieces — the assassination of a foreign dictator being covered by a Howard Cosell and edited at a brisk, dare we say, experimental clip — if “Bananas” is ultimately not the most rewarding of Allen’s earlier, wackier films, it is still a lot of fun, combining moments of sublime silliness with more standard-issue observational New York living stuff. The foreign plot, which involves Allen becoming the leader of a fictional South American country in order to impress a girl, is less successful than the rest of the film, seemingly based on a mash-up of his short story writing and somewhat surrealist stand-up routines, that doesn’t quite work when translated to film. But the more familiar Allen-Manhattan-relationship stuff is an early goldmine, that includes a hilarious break-up sequence when Allen and his paramour discuss “giving” and “receiving” endlessly. “Bananas” never quite reaches the gonzo highs of “Love and Death,” and while it remains probably less dated than “Sleeper” is also lacks that film’s most inspired highs. But it’s does have what no other Allen film can boast: Sylvester Stallone in an early scene as a subway mugger.

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