Suffering from writer's block and eagerly awaiting his writing award, Harry Block remembers events from his past and scenes from his best-selling books as characters, real and fictional, come back to haunt him.
When Jack and Sally announce that they're splitting up, this comes as a shock to their best friends Gabe and Judy. Maybe mostly because they also are drifting apart and are now being made aware of it. So while Jack and Sally try to go on and meet new people, the marriage of Gabe and Judy gets more and more strained, and they begin to find themselves being attracted to other people. Written by
Leon Wolters <wolters@strw.LeidenUniv.nl>
The scene in which Sally, while having sex with Michael, begins to mentally compare (through voiceover narration) him and her husband, as well as numerous friends and acquaintances, to hedgehogs and foxes, is almost certainly an allusion to the well-known 1953 essay The Hedgehog and the Fox, written by British philosopher Isaiah Berlin. In that book, Berlin contrasts two distinct types of thinker in the Western literary and philosophical tradition: the ones he calls "hedgehogs" - "those who relate everything to a single central vision, one system" - and the ones he calls "foxes" - "those who pursue many ends, often unrelated and even contradictory... related to no moral or aesthetic principle." (By this standard, according to him, Dante, for example, can be considered a hedgehog and Shakespeare a fox.) But Berlin also warns that "like all over-simple classifications of this type, the dichotomy [between hedgehogs and foxes] becomes, if pressed, artificial, scholastic and ultimately absurd," and Sally's thoughts appear to be presented as an example of such absurdity. See more »
When Sally (Judy Davis) and Jack (Sydney Pollack) are arguing in their living room, one of the crew members can be seen moving in the reflection off the picture glass on the back wall. See more »
Einstein was then celebrating, uh, the seventieth birthday anniversary and there was a colloquium given for him. And he said, "God doesn't play dice with the universe".
No. He just plays hide-and-seek.
See more »
Any film that affects me emotionally I consider great. But a film that affects me so much that I feel it physically can be called a masterpiece. Narrative does not normally have such power. When a spectator is learning about people who aren't directly connected with you, who are usually not even real, then he/she should realize that these characters are apart from your life and should not matter.
Woody Allen's Husbands and Wives is a film, however, which sets the viewer in the action on screen. He does this with perfect hand-held cameras and jump cuts. The camera work makes you feel like you're right there, and it adds a breakneck speed to the film. This seems like one of the most realistic films ever made.
I have no complaints about this film myself. I would give it a 10/10, but make no mistake: this is a very unpleasant film to watch. I like unpleasant films, but this one is particularly harsh. The situations develop like a fly landing in a Venus fly trap. A character will walk towards a life which he/she believes will bring sweetness and happiness, but the new life quickly engulfs them. And when the film ends, the characters are seen stepping into a different trap: quicksand. No audience member could be naive enough to think that any of the characters are standing in a desirable place when the film closes.
Husbands and Wives is a movie that could cause divorces, and could cause long-term lapses between relationships. If nothing else, it is a film that will make you cringe and squirm.
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